Silica

Silica Train-the-Trainer Course

The MCAA’s Silica Train-the-Trainer Course is a six-hour program that will train a key employee to train other employees to be a competent person with regard to the written exposure control plan. Certificates will be provided to those who complete the program.

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Silica Questions and Answers

We have heard a lot of questions about the pending change to the silica rule. Below are some answers to those questions.

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Final Silica Rule Released

Executive Orders Have No Impact on the Pending Silica Rule

February 1, 2017

The Executive Orders recently signed by President Trump have no impact on the pending silica rule.

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Silica rule released

April 20, 2016

The new silica rule was recently released from OSHA. As expected, the rule was not a workable solution for the issue of silicosis.

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Construction industry groups file suit over OSHA silica rule

March 24, 2016

Eight construction industry organizations filed a petition for review of the final crystalline silica rule by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

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Construction industry voices concerns with silica rule

March 24, 2016

The Construction Industry Safety Coalition (CISC) has concerns with the final rule on respirable crystalline silica released today by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

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US Labor Department announces final rule to improve U.S. workers’ protection from the dangers of ‘respirable’ silica dust

March 24, 2016

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration today announced a final rule to improve protections for workers exposed to respirable silica dust.

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Final silica rule released

March 24, 2016

The new silica rule was rolled out this morning by OSHA. Our initial take is mixed. There are changes to the rule and some seem positive.

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Safety Forum

OSHA’s New Final Rule on Crystalline Silica: What you Need to Know! 1:16:00 OSHA’s New Final Rule on Crystalline Silica: What you Need to Know!

Resources

What is Crystalline Silica?

Crystalline silica, a white or colorless compound (SiO2) occurring as quartz, sand, flint, agate, and many other minerals, is commonly present in masonry industry workplaces.

MCAA Testimony on Silica

The MCAA has submitted the following testimony the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regarding the proposed silica rule.

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Proposed Rule

Occupational Exposure to Respirable Crystalline Silica

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) proposes to amend its existing standards for occupational exposure to respirable crystalline silica.

View Proposed Rule | Outline of Proposed Silica Rule | View OSHA Website

Preliminary Economic Analysis and Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis

OSHA's Preliminary Economic Analysis and Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (PEA) addresses issues related to the costs, benefits, technological and economic feasibility, and the economic impacts (including impacts on small entities) of the proposed respirable crystalline silica rule and evaluates regulatory alternatives to the proposed rule.

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Position Papers

Mason Contractors Association of America

OSHA continues to designate issuing a workplace crystalline silica regulation as a top agency priority at a time when silica Personal Exposure Limits (PELS) are already in place. The masonry industry urges Congress to ensure that OSHA's regulatory focus is not swayed by bad science on the matter of workplace exposure to crystalline silica.

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MCAA Special Reports

OSHA Proposed Rule on Crystalline Silica

This MCAA special report provides a summary of OSHA’s proposed rule on crystalline silica in a question and answer format. It is not legal advice and is offered for general information purposes only. For advice on how the proposed rule may impact your construction operations, consult your safety advisor, insurance agent and/or legal counsel.

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Letters

Date: Wednesday, June 24, 2015
From: Multiple Associations
To: Members of the Senate Appropriations Committee
Subject: Support Senator Hoeven’s Amendment to Suspend the Silica Rulemaking

OSHA’s proposed silica regulation would impose billions of dollars of cost on employers that would result in less economic growth and significantly impede the exploration and development of new and badly needed sources of energy while possibly not addressing the most effective way to protect human health.

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Date: Friday, December 13, 2013
From: Jeff Buczkiewicz, President, MCAA
To: The Honorable David Michaels, Ph.D., MPH
Subject: Notice of Intention to Appear at Informal Public Hearing

The Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA) hereby files this Notice of Intent to Appear at the Informal Public Hearing on OSHA’s Proposed Rule for Occupational Exposure to Respirable Crystalline Silica.

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Date: Monday, November 25, 2013
From: Jeff Buczkiewicz, President, MCAA
To: William Perry, Acting Director, Directorate of Standards and Guidance
Subject: Occupational Exposure to Respirable Crystalline Silica

While we are grateful for an extension of any kind, the reality still exists that our ability to adequately review and prepare our comments is greatly diminished without the additional time we originally requested.

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Date: Thursday, November 14, 2013
From: William Perry, Acting Director, Directorate of Standards and Guidance
To: Jeff Buczkiewicz, President, MCAA
Subject: Occupational Exposure to Respirable Crystalline Silica

Thank you for your letter to Assistance Secretary David Michaels, dated October 7, 2013, requesting an extension of the deadlines associated with OSHA's Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Occupational Exposure to Crystalline Silica.

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Date: Monday, October 07, 2013
From: Jeff Buczkiewicz, President, MCAA
To: The Honorable David Michaels, Ph.D., MPH
Subject: Occupational Exposure to Respirable Crystalline Silica

The Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA) respectfully requests a 90 day extension to the public comment period for the proposed silica rule (referenced above).

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Articles

Silica call to action

June 30, 2015

The MCAA is working to try to get language into a House bill that would support Senate bill language to require OSHA to do more research and prove the need for the new silica legislation.

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Senate Appropriations Committee passes amendment delaying silica rule

June 30, 2015

Last week, Senator John Hoeven (R-ND) offered an amendment to delay the proposed silica exposure rule being pursued by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

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New study finds that OSHA officials underestimated cost of silica rule for construction industry by $4.5 billion a year

March 26, 2015

A new report released today by the Construction Industry Safety Coalition found that the OSHA proposed silica standards will cost the construction industry $5 billion per year.

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Will OSHA listen?

September 3, 2014

Final post-public hearing comments have been submitted to OSHA in response to their proposed new rule to reduce the permissible amount of workers' exposure to crystalline silica.

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CSDA testifies on proposed silica rule

May 19, 2014

Representatives from the CSDA recently testified at public hearings at the Department of Labor in Washington D.C. about the proposed new rule for respirable crystalline silica.

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MCAA testifies at OSHA Silica Hearings

April 23, 2014

On March 31, 2014, the MCAA testified about the impact the new OSHA silica proposed rule will have on the masonry industry.

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OSHA continues extensive public engagement on silica proposal

March 20, 2014

OSHA on Tuesday began holding public hearings for the notice of proposed rulemaking on occupational exposure to crystalline silica.

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Silica comments in

March 5, 2014

One of the biggest issues facing the masonry industry is the proposed new rule being pursued by OSHA to further reduce the permissible amount of workers’ exposure to silica.

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Construction Industry Safety Coalition urges U.S. Department of Labor to withdraw “significantly flawed’ silica proposal

February 12, 2014

The Construction Industry Safety Coalition issued the following statement as it filed comments regarding OSHA’s proposed Crystalline Silica Rulemaking.

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OSHA extends comment period on proposed silica rule to February 11

January 28, 2014

OSHA is extending the public comment period for the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Occupational Exposure to Crystalline Silica to Feb. 11, 2014.

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Update on the OSHA Silica Exposure Rule

December 13, 2013

One of the biggest issues that the Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA) has been watching in Washington, D.C., for the last decade has finally come to a head.

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Participate in public hearings on OSHA's silica rulemaking

December 10, 2013

Members of the public who wish to participate in public hearings on OSHA's proposed silica rule must submit a notice of intention to appear by Dec. 12.

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OSHA releases new silica exposure rule

October 18, 2013

One of the biggest issues that the Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA) has been watching in Washington, D.C., for the last decade has finally come to a head.

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OSHA's proposed silica rule to be posted to Federal Register September 12

September 12, 2013

The proposed silica rule will be posted to the Federal Register on Thursday, September 12, 2013. That will be the official federal site for public comment on the rule.

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OSHA’s proposed silica rule a serious concern

August 29, 2013

A coalition of construction industry groups is concerned about a proposed rule from OSHA intended to protect workers from inhaling dust containing silica.

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OSHA Finally Releases Proposed New Rule on Silica Exposure

August 27, 2013

On August 23, 2013 the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published a proposed new rule on silica exposure.

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OSHA Proposes New Rules To Limit Workplace Exposure To Silica Dust

August 25, 2013

Long-anticipated rules that would limit exposure to silica dust in the workplace were proposed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) on Friday.

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OSHA proposed rule on crystalline silica

August 24, 2013

Inhaling crystalline silica particles puts workers at risk for a number of diseases, including lung cancer and kidney disease, U.S. officials said.

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Government issues new rules for silica dust exposure

August 24, 2013

The Labor Dept. issued new rules for silica dust in the air in an effort to reduce workplace exposure to the potentially deadly byproduct of construction and manufacturing.

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A Victory for Silica Dust Exposed Workers?

August 23, 2013

Today, after a much-criticized delay on issuing a rule to limit workers' exposure to cancer-causing silica dust, the Obama administration put forward a proposed rule for public consideration.

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At long last, OSHA publishes proposal to protect silica-exposed workers

August 23, 2013

After more than 900 days of “review’ by the White House’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), OSHA announced it was publishing a proposed rule to protect workers who are exposed to respirable crystalline silica.

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Gov't Seeks New Limits on Silica Dust

August 23, 2013

Federal regulators announced plans Friday to dramatically limit workplace exposure to silica dust, an agent known to cause crippling lung disease and cancer in thousands of workers each year.

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Labor Department Proposes 'Life-Saving' Rule To Tighten Silica Standards On Worksites

August 23, 2013

After a long delay at the White House and heavy pressure from public health groups, the Labor Department proposed a new regulation on Friday that would tighten standards on silica dust on U.S. work sites, saving thousands of lives and curbing lung disease, according to occupational health experts.

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Long Overdue Silica Dust Rule Issued, Final Action Must Be Swift, Says Trumka

August 23, 2013

Sixteen years ago, federal workplace safety officials began developing a rule to control and limit workers’ exposure to silica dust.

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White House, Finally, Releases Silica Rule

August 23, 2013

After more than two years of unnecessary delay, the White House Office of Management and Budget has finally allowed the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) to move forward with a proposed rule to protect workers from exposure to silica dust.

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New Rules Would Cut Silica Dust Exposure

August 23, 2013

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration proposed long-awaited rules on Friday to limit crystalline silica, a move it said would prevent nearly 700 deaths a year by reducing exposure to these very small particles that can cause lung cancer and other diseases.

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OSHA Announces Proposed Silica Rule – Let’s Keep it Rolling

August 23, 2013

After more than two years of White House review, OSHA has finally published its proposed new standards for silica exposure.

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OSHA proposes regulations for airborne silica dust

August 23, 2013

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced Friday that it is proposing to create a rule for preventing silicosis by lowering workplace exposure to crystalline silica particles.

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U.S. Seeks to Reduce Worker Exposure to Silica Dust

August 23, 2013

The Labor Department on Friday proposed a long-delayed rule to lower workers' exposure to crystalline silica, a potentially deadly dust that is a common component in construction materials.

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OSHA Proposes Silica Standard Rule

August 23, 2013

OSHA has released a proposed permissible exposure level (PEL) for silica dust. The proposed PEL for silica dust is now set at 50 micrograms of respirable crystalline silica per cubic meter of air (50 μg/m3).

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The Nation’s Largest Sand Producers Say a Proposed Occupational Safety and Health Administration Silica Rule is Needed to Protect Workers

August 23, 2013

Below is a statement from Mark Ellis, president of the National Industrial Sand Association (NISA), on OSHA’s proposed silica rule announced August 23, 2013.

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Proposed Silica Rule Will Protect Thousands of Nation’s Most Vulnerable Workers

August 23, 2013

The White House’s release today of a long-delayed rule that would shield workers from excessive exposure to silica dust on the job is an important step forward to protect some of our nation’s most vulnerable workers, the National Council for Occupational Safety and Health (National COSH) said today.

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OSHA seeks new limits on silica dust

August 23, 2013

Federal regulators announced plans Friday to dramatically limit workplace exposure to silica dust, an agent known to cause crippling lung disease and cancer in thousands of workers each year.

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OSHA Rule Targets Worker Exposure to Silica

August 23, 2013

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration on Friday proposed a long-awaited rule to control worker exposures to silica, a toxic mineral that can cause the deadly lung disease silicosis, lung cancer and other ailments.

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Proposed OSHA rule decreases PEL

August 23, 2013

OSHA released their proposed rule on silica this afternoon. The new rule is decreasing the PEL to .50 and the remediation level to .25.

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Press Releases

Construction Industry Safety Coalition Urges U.S. Department of Labor to Withdraw Significantly Flawed Silica Proposal

February 11, 2014

The Construction Industry Safety Coalition, which represents twenty-five different construction trade associations, issued the following statement as it filed comments regarding the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) proposed Crystalline Silica Rulemaking.

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OSHA announces proposed silica rule

August 23, 2013

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration today announced a proposed rule to lower worker exposure to crystalline silica.

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OSHA’s Proposed Silica Rule a Serious Concern for Construction Industry According to MCAA

August 28, 2013

A coalition of construction industry groups is concerned about a proposed rule from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) that’s intended to protect workers from inhaling dust containing silica, created by activities such as cutting brick or block, and sawing, grinding or drilling concrete.

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Proposed OSHA rule decreases PEL

August 23, 2013

OSHA released their proposed rule on silica this afternoon. The new rule is decreasing the PEL to .50 and the remediation level to .25. In addition OSHA has a general industry rule and a construction industry rule.

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US Department of Labor’s OSHA Announces Proposed Rule to Protect Workers Exposed to Crystalline Silica

August 23, 2013

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration today announced a proposed rule aimed at curbing lung cancer, silicosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and kidney disease in America’s workers.

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Additional Resources

Construction Industry Safety Coalition (CISC)

The Construction Industry Safety Coalition (CISC) is made up of 25 trade associations, representing all sectors of the construction industry.

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OSHA’s Proposed Crystalline Silica Rule: Construction

OSHA is proposing two standards to protect workers from exposure to respirable crystalline silica—one for construction, and the other for general industry and maritime—in order to allow employers to tailor solutions to the conditions in their workplaces.

View OSHA Fact Sheet

OSHA's Rulemaking on Crystalline Silica

OSHA recently released a proposed rule to protect workers exposed to respirable crystalline silica. This is a proposal, not a final rule. OSHA encourages the public to participate in development of the rule by submitting comments and participating in public hearings.

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Controlling Silica Exposures in Construction

This guidance document addresses the control of employee exposures to respirable dust containing crystalline silica. This document provides information on the effectiveness of various engineering control approaches for several kinds of construction operations and equipment, and contains recommendations for work practices and respiratory protection, as appropriate.

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