Electromagnetic Field (EMF) Exposure Assessment

All employers have a duty and legal responsibility to risk assess workplace exposure to electromagnetic fields (EMF), where it has the potential to cause harm to health.

The Control of Electromagnetic Fields at Work (CEMFAW) Regulations (UK) 2016 aims to protect workers from exposure to electric and magnetic fields by providing a set of Action Levels (ALs) and Exposure Limit Values (ELVs).

To comply with the guidance outlined in the CEMFAW Regulations, SOCOTEC’s occupational hygiene team can support organisations in assessing, measuring and managing electromagnetic field sources across a number of industries.

Our Services Include:

  • Identifying areas of exposure risk through site risk assessment and audits
  • Advice on implementing control measures to restrict exposure (including exclusion zoning)
  • Conducting measurement surveys of EMF alongside evaluation to Action Levels and Exposure Limit Criteria
  • Supporting with EMF plans and producing related policies

EMF - The Risks

Classed as a non-ionising radiation, EMFs are created when electrical energy is used. In domestic environments, EMFs are produced at low levels. However, sources in the workplace can produce much higher EMFs that can be harmful to employee health.

Health risks associated with exposure to EMF will depend upon the type of equipment being used and the field / frequency range emitted. Health effects can include direct effects such as vertigo, nausea or heating of body tissue, or indirect effects through interference with active medical implants such as pacemakers and defibrillators, or passive medical implants such as artificial joints or pins. EMF exposure can also pose a risk to expectant mothers.

Higher risk activities include those workplaces with electrical supplies carrying currents greater than 100A, workplaces undertaking welding or metal production, workplaces with magnetisers, demagnetisers or microwaves, and those workplaces involved in transport and medical activities.

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