Positive Statistics: There Are No Occupational Diseases at the Uralasbest Plant

The official study by the Russian Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing (Rospotrebnadzor) based on the data of 2018 has not revealed any cases of occupational diseases at the Uralasbest plant, which is confirmed by an official study document recently published on the Rosportrebnadzor website.

Rospotrebnadzor experts have reviewed the statistics of all enterprises of the Sverdlovsk region for 9 months of 2019, and have concluded that the level of occupational diseases in the region is steadily decreasing. Manufacturing industry enterprises have the highest number of occupational disease cases. “The smelting industry takes the first place in the number of occupational diseases (65.2%); the second place is divided between production of other non-metallic products, repair and installation of machinery and equipment, production of other vehicles and equipment (8.6% each); production of finished metal products and manufacturing of machinery and equipment hold the third place (4.3% each).”

The document does not mention the asbestos mining industry, for a good reason. The Uralasbest integrated plant is an industrial giant located near the monocity of Asbest. The plant continuously introduces modern technologies to ensure the safety of its employees in the workplace as part of its policy of controlled use of chrysotile. Workers who come into contact with the mineral in some form are provided with personal protective equipment. The workplaces are equipped with powerful purification systems and the plant ensures regular full medical examinations for its employees. No cases of occupational diseases were recorded at the plant in 2018.

The similar situation is observed with asbestos-related diseases, that is, no such diseases were detected among the residents of Asbest and its vicinity. This point needs to be especially emphasised, considering the massive campaign that has been running for the past time, aiming to discredit and subsequently ban the use of the chrysotile. The main argument of the opponents is their blanket accusation of the chrysotile industry of high occupational disease rate and environmental pollution.

The study conducted by Rospotrebnadzor experts mentions that the main causes of occupational diseases are the use of outdated equipment and negligence in the workplace. At Uralasbest, the zero occupational disease statistics is due to the high professionalism of its workers. Uralasbest imposes the same strict standards of quality and safety both on the manufactured products and on disposal of industrial waste.

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