OSHA’s New Regulations on Respirable Silica

OSHA has issued a final rule designed to protect employees from the dangers of respirable silica in the workplace, based on more than three years of scientific research, industry consensus standards and stakeholder input, Employers in the Construction, Maritime and General Industry now have one to five years (depending on the industry) to comply with the new regulations. These new regulations limit the amount of crystalline silica dust per cubic meter of air a worker will be exposed to (Permissible Exposure Limit, or PEL). They also provide new rules regarding training, communication, medical care, engineering controls and breathing protection.

Prolonged exposure to respirable crystalline silica, a by-product of cutting, drilling, crushing or grinding stone, brick, concrete, and other materials, has been proven to cause silicosis, lung cancer, COPD and kidney disease.  The new OSHA ruling is an important step in protecting worker heath and safety.

Pullman Ermator can help employers to easily meet or exceed the new safety standards, and protect employees from breathing in the particles and developing these harmful illnesses. Pullman Ermator’s approach to air cleaning and dust extraction is unparalleled, with every single HEPA filter being individually tested and certified at a filtration rate of 99.9% at 0.3 microns. The Longopac system and Jet Pulse filter cleaning system provide further protection against silicone dust, by keeping the dust completely contained when disposing of the dust or purging the prefilter.

OSHA estimates that the new regulations will prevent more than 900 new cases of silicosis and ultimately save over 600 lives.

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