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Occupational Health and Safety Act, 1993 (Act No. 85 of 1993)


Hazardous Biological Agents Regulations

10. Control of exposure to HBA



1) An employer and self-employed person shall ensure that the –
a) exposure of persons to HBA in the working environment is either prevented or, where this is not reasonably practicable, adequately controlled; and
b) standard precautions contained in Annexure C to these Regulation are implemented to reduce the risk of transmission of HBA from recognised and unrecognised sources of infection in a workplace.


2) Where reasonably practicable, the employer or self-employed person shall control the exposure of persons to a HBA in the working environment by applying the following measures where appropriate –
a) Limiting the amount of HBA used which might contaminate the working environment;
b) limiting the number of employees who will be exposed or might be exposed;
c) introducing engineering control measures for the control of exposure, which may include the following –
i) Process separation, automation or enclosure;
ii) the installation of local extraction ventilation systems to processes, equipment and tools for the control of emissions of an airborne HBA;
iii) separate workplaces for different processes;
iv) proper access control to prevent unauthorized access; and
v) immediate personal or environmental disinfection.
d) introducing appropriate work procedures that employees must follow where materials are used, processes are carried out, or incidents might occur that could give rise to the exposure of an employee to HBA, and such procedures shall include written instructions to ensure –
i) the safe handling, use and disposal of HBA;
ii) the proper use and maintenance of process machinery, installations, equipment, tools and local extraction and general ventilation systems;
iii) the regular cleaning of machinery and work areas by vacuum cleaners fitted with a suitable filter that prevents contamination of the environment; and
iv) that a system whereby changes in work procedures and processes that indicate the need for early corrective action can be readily identified;
e) ensuring that emissions to the atmosphere comply with the provisions of the Atmospheric Pollution Prevention Act, 1965 ( Act No. 45 of 1965);
f) displaying the biohazard sign shown in Annexure D to these Regulation and other relevant warning signs; and
g) specifying procedures for taking, handling and processing samples that might contain HBA.