Most provisions of the Respirable Crystalline Silica standard for general industry and maritime, 29 CFR § 1910.1053, become enforceable on June 23, 2018. The standard establishes a new 8-hour time-weighted average (TWA) permissible exposure limit (PEL) of 50 µg/m3, an action level (AL) of 25 µg/m3 and associated ancillary requirements.
During the first 30 days of enforcement, OSHA will assist employers that are making good faith efforts to meet the new standard’s requirements. If upon inspection, it appears an employer is not making any efforts to comply, compliance officers can conduct air monitoring and consider citations for non-compliance with any applicable sections of the new standard.
However, any proposed citations related to inspections conducted in this 30-day time period will require National Office review prior to issuance.
Exposure to silica dust, which is created when cutting, sawing, grinding, drilling, and crushing stone, rock, concrete, brick, block, and mortar, can cause cancer, silicosis, COPD and kidney disease.