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Use these seven tips to improve ventilation in your workplace - or face penalties

by , 24 June 2015
If your employees are experiencing headaches, dizziness, sinus congestion, itchy or watery eyes, scratchy throats and an inability to concentrate at work, poor ventilation is probably to blame.

And if you don't improve the ventilation in your workplace, you'll risk your business facing hefty penalties or even getting shut down! It will also contribute to unproductivity and increased sick leave amongst your employees.

Since it's your responsibility as the employer to provide and maintain a safe and healthy working environment for your employees, it's crucial that you recognise poor ventilation is a hazard you need to eliminate.

Here are seven easy ways to ensure healthy ventilation in your workplace

#1: Don't block the air vents
Make sure none of the air vents in window bays are blocked with objects like books, file or handbags. They'll cut out the airflow and prevent proper heating and cooling. This reduces the supply of fresh air and produces condensation. Condensation could eventually cause water damage and even promote mould growth. This could pose health problems for employees with allergies or environmental sensitivities. 
 
#2: Make sure personal habits might affect the air quality
Personal habits often affect the quality of air in the workplace. While many minor problems are insignificant by themselves, every bit of pollution adds up. To help promote a clean, odour-free working environment, try this:
Keep the lunch room/area clean so odours don't develop.
Avoid using air fresheners – they only mask odours.
Take care of plants – wipe their leaves clean with a damp cloth to remove dust. Also make sure there's a tray under them to catch any leaks.
 
#3:  Open all windows and doors
Open windows and doors whenever you can to allow fresh air into the workplace.
 
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#4: Install fans in the kitchen and bathrooms
Installing fans in the kitchen and bathrooms will help extract moisture and odour.
 
#5: Clean the workplace regularly
Regularly cleaning will reduce the amount of bacteria, viruses, fungi, mites, pollen and other allergens in the workplace.
 
#6: Review any sources of potent chemical pollutants
Review potent chemical pollutants like building materials, furniture, office equipment and chemical products. Make sure you manage their use responsibly to reduce exposure.
 
#7: Complete a monthly self-assessment on your workplace
This help you further eliminate poor ventilation problems if they arise in your assessment.
 
Use these tips to improve ventilation in your workplace and reduce the health and safety risks of your employees.


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