The Health & Safety Authority (HSA) has issued a new Code of Practice for Indoor Air Quality (IAQ). The Code of Practice is implemented through S.I. No. 255/2023 – Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (General Application) (Amendment) Regulations 2023. This code is now available to assist employers with managing IAQ in the workplaces, you can download the full code of practice here – Code of Practice for Indoor Air Quality.
This Code of Practice provides a practical risk assessment approach to help employers make a reasonable determination of IAQ in their workplace. The Code provides guidance on:
- improving IAQ
- improving ventilation in workplaces
- establishing a set of acceptable values for specific chemical and physical parameters
- describing mechanisms to identify, evaluate and control IAQ issues.
This Code addresses risk assessment competency in terms of workplace complexity and provides guidance on investigating IAQ complaints. It also provides information on IAQ, air filtration, ventilation and CO2 monitors. The code outlines IAQ issues, potential sources and the impact of external air pollution on IAQ. It also identifies a list of possible health effects associated with poor IAQ.
This Code of Practice is relevant to all workplaces. IAQ is an important factor to ensure a healthy workplace. A large percentage of workers spend a considerable amount of their time indoors. IAQ can affect job satisfaction, worker productivity, comfort and well-being. Poor IAQ can cause short-term and long-term health problems. This code requires employers to make sure adequate fresh air is provided in enclosed workplaces and identifies how to improve ventilation, both Natural Ventilation and Mechanical Ventilation.
ISME would advise that companies use this Code to develop company policies and to include ventilation of enclosed workplaces as part of a workplace risk assessment to ensure poor IAQ is identified and addressed appropriately.
Further information on ventilation can be found below: