February 5, 2020
Contact: Office of Communications
Phone: 202-693-1999

U.S. Department of Labor Revises National Emphasis Program into Reduce or Eliminate Worker Exposure into Silica

WASHINGTON, DC — The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has established that a revised National Emphasis Program (NEP) to identify and reduce or eliminate worker exposures to respirable crystalline silica (RCS) in general industry, maritime, and structure. The NEP targets specific sectors expected to have the greatest numbers of employees exposed to silica, also concentrates on enforcement of the new silica criteria, one for general industry and marine (29 CFR § 1910. 1053) and one for building (29 CFR § 1926. 1153). These criteria became effective in June 2016, and building companies were required to start complying with their benchmark since of September 23, 2017, and general industry and marine employers were required to start complying with their benchmark as of June 23, 2018.

What changes were made to the NEP?

  • Revised application to the reduced permissible exposure limit for respirable crystalline silica to 50 micrograms per cubic meter (µg/p 3) as a 8-hour time-weighted typical in general industry, maritime, also construction;
  • Updated list of target businesses, as recorded in the appendix of this NEP; in this listing, region offices will create randomized institution lists of companies in their local jurisdictions for targeted testimonials;
  • Compliance security and health officials will refer to present enforcement advice for RCS inspection processes;
  • All OSHA regional and area offices need to comply with this particular NEP, however they Aren’t needed to develop and execute corresponding regional or local accent programs; and
  • State Plans should engage due to the nationally exposures to silica.

OSHA will run 90 times of compliance support for stakeholders before starting programmed inspections to the NEP.

Respirable crystalline silica includes small silica particles which are made by cutting, sawing, grinding, grinding, and devastating materials like stone, stone, concrete, brick, block, and mortar. ) Inhaling the dust generated during these surgeries can lead to silicosis, an incurable lung disease, lung cancer, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder. For more info about the health consequences from exposure, and the way that companies can protect employees, see OSHA’s Safety and Health Topics webpage on Crystalline Silica.

Under that the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, companies are accountable for providing safe and healthy workplaces for their workers.  OSHA’s role is to help make sure such requirements for America’s working women and men by establishing and implementing standards, and providing instruction, instruction, and help. For more info, see www.osha.gov.

The assignment of this Department of Labor is to cultivate, encourage, and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and acquaintances of those United States; enhance working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and also guarantee work-related advantages and rights. 

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U.S. Department of all Labor information substances are available at http://www.dol.gov. The Department’s Reasonable Accommodation Resource Center converts departmental data and documents into other formats, including Braille and big print. For option format requests, please get the Department in (202) 693-7828 (voice) or (800) 877-8339 (national relay).

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Jeff Thornton