Attention construction workers and business owners!!!

In late August, OSHA announced a proposal for a new crystalline silica standard for the construction industry. The propoed standard would require employers to:

    • Measure the amount of silica that workers are exposed to if it may be at or above an action level of 25 μg/m3 (micrograms of silica per cubic meter of air), averaged over an eight-hour day;



  • Protect workers from respirable crystalline silica exposures above the permissible exposure limit (PEL) of 50 μg/m3, averaged over an eight-hour day;


  • Limit workers’ access to areas where they could be exposed above the PEL;
  • Use dust controls to protect workers from silica exposures above the PEL;
  • Provide respirators to workers when dust controls cannot limit exposures to the PEL;
  • Offer medical exams—including chest X-rays and lung function tests—every three years for workers exposed above the PEL for 30 or more days per year;
  • Train workers on work operations that result in silica exposure and ways to limit exposure; and
  • Keep records of workers’ silica exposure and medical exams.

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Image source J. Solis,