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OSHA delays enforcing construction crystalline silica standard

Agency urges employers to take steps to comply in the interim

Posted April 10, 2017

Enforcement of the construction Respirable Crystalline Silica standard (29 CFR 1926.1153) will be moved back to September 23, 2017, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced on April 6, 2017. Because of the unique requirements in the standard, OSHA will provide additional educational materials and guidance for employers.

In the meantime, OSHA says that construction employers should take steps to:

  • Come into compliance with the new permissible exposure limit, or
  • Implement specific dust controls for certain operations as provided in Table 1 of the standard.

In addition, they should prepare to implement the standard’s other requirements:

  • Exposure assessment,
  • Medical surveillance, and
  • Employee training.

Section 1926.1153 had an original enforcement date for construction of June 23, 2017.

Crystalline silica is a common component of sand, stone, rock, concrete, brick, block, and mortar.

Exposures to crystalline silica dust occur in construction operations involving cutting, sawing, drilling, and crushing of concrete, brick, block, rock, and stone products.

Crystalline Silica for Construction - Online CourseJ. J. Keller's Crystalline Silica for Construction - Online Course addresses critical information construction workers must be aware of regarding the dangers of respirable crystalline silica.


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