Emptying and De-sludging Practices: An Occupational Safety Needs Assessment Study

Sen Mamta Gautam, Mamta Mantri, Asma N, Kavita Wankhade, Rajesh Ramamoorthy, Rajiv Raman, Srinithi Sudhakar | 2019


The Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act, 2013 has mandated Personal Protective Equipment(PPE) and cleaning devices for sanitary workers but its utility and efficacy in the Indian context is worrisome. The study’s objective is to understand occupational safety, health and hygiene issues faced by de-sludging workers and to comprehend how risk exposure can be minimised through protection, prevention and mitigation. A systems-thinking approach involving daily assessment of workers, field testing of PPE and safety experts’ inputs helped chart hazard mitigation measures, protection by use of appropriate PPE and safety protocols for 184 de-sludging workers in Tiruchirappalli.