In the emery, corundum, sandpaper, and allied industries, great attention is given to keeping the dust away from the mouth and nostrils of the workmen by means of hoods and exhaust fans. Oftentimes workmen remove their hoods recklessly and thereby expose their lives to danger. There are two or three times as many deaths among grinders, polishers, and cutters due to disease of the lungs brought on by breathing these particles, as among adults following other occupations. Proper working conditions and a due amount of precaution on the part of the workman, however, render a comparatively good protection against these dangers.
In the rag-dusting, sorting, and cutting rooms of some paper mills, objectionable amounts of dust are often present. Workmen exposed to dusty atmospheres are especially susceptible to diseases of the lungs, such as tuberculosis, because of the constant irritation of the respiratory tract. Constant coughing causes the mucous membrane of the throat to become inflamed and this condition allows germs to thrive. In a healthy individual the normal mucous membrane would not allow the germs to penetrate the membrane.