Preventing Exposure to Harmful Substances
We are committed to reducing occupational health risks and improving working conditions by, for example, utilizing the Occupational Safety and Health Management System scheme, the harmful chemical substance risk assessment (new risk assessment system) established in fiscal 2015, through onsite inspections conducted by occupational physicians and health supervisors as well as by means of internal audits. Regarding autonomous chemical substance management, we will steadily promote measures to prevent exposure mainly through hazardous risk assessment and facility improvements, while systematically preparing for the establishment of a new chemical substance management system, including the appointment of a chemical substance manager and a person responsible for managing the wearing of protective equipment from fiscal 2024.
The reformed Industrial Safety and Health Act now requires reinforcement of risk assessments of chemical hazards and implementation of countermeasures. Our conventional risk assessment system was updated to create a new system, and since fiscal 2016, we have been conducting a risk assessment of working with harmful substances (inhalant chemicals) using the new system. The total number of completed qualitative risk assessment cases by fiscal 2022 marked 13,653, and we have finished all qualitative risk assessments. Of these, 3,435 cases were identified to be of high risk and we have completed quantitative assessments on 3,099 cases. Work procedures that have been judged to be of high risk as a result of the quantitative assessment, have been subject to methodical reforms to reduce the risks involved. In addition, we also built specific risk assessments for health problems newly caused by the absorption of chemical substances through the skin in fiscal 2018 in response to a rise in social concern about absorption of hazardous chemicals through the skin. In fiscal 2019, we started these assessments and have completed the assessments of all 4,091 cases in fiscal 2021. Based on the assessment results, we are reviewing facility response and working procedures as well as selecting protectors with more appropriate shielding and durability to reduce risks.
In fiscal 2023, a qualitative assessment will be conducted on the new work. In addition, we plan to address 336 of the 3,099 cases with high risk levels for which quantitative assessments have not yet been conducted.