Occupational Disease – Dire Straits 1982

“Warning lights are flashing down at Quality Control

Someone threw a spanner and they threw him in the hole

There’s rumors in the loading bay and anger in the town

Somebody blew the whistle and the walls came down

There’s a meeting in the boardroom they’re trying to trace the smell

There’s leaking in the washroom there’s a sneak in personnel

Somewhere in the corridors someone was heard to sneeze

‘goodness me could this be Industrial Disease?”

Dire Straits might have been on to something, in Alberta “Industrial Disease” is known as Occupational Disease and sadly, more workers die worldwide from occupational disease than occupational incidents.

You may recognize the names of the diseases:

  • Asbestosis
  • Some types of Asthma
  • Campylobacter
  • Noise Induced Hearing Loss
  • Silicosis
  • Contact Dermatitis

Avoiding Occupational Diseases – What you can do

  • Find out the materials and Controlled Products being used at your workplace, read the SDS
  • Know the proper PPE to be used for every situation and use it
  • Make sure you are properly trained, if you are unsure about something ask your supervisor, safety person, safety rep or Joint Health and Safety committee
  • Be alert to changes in your health
  • Make sure your doctor knows what you do for a living and what you work around.