Is your business affected by silica?

The dangers of crystalline silica
Crystalline silica is a common mineral that is found in materials, such as sand, stone, artificial stone and brick. When workers cut, grind, crush or drill materials that contain crystalline silica, very small dust particles are created. These tiny particles are referred to as respirable particles, and they can travel deep into workers’ lungs and cause serious and sometimes deadly diseases.¹

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 2.3 million workers are exposed to respirable crystalline silica in the workplace, including 2 million workers in construction and 300,000 workers in general industry, maritime and hydraulic fracturing.³

OSHA’s new standard
Rules for OSHA’s standard on respirable crystalline silica recently changed to encompass construction, general industry and maritime. The new requirements went into effect for the construction industry on June 23, 2017, and for general industry and maritime on June 23, 2018. OSHA requires employers to protect workers from exposure to respirable crystalline silica due to the risk of developing serious diseases.²

Is your workplace at risk?
Industries at risk include, but are not limited to:¹

  • Construction
  • Masonry work
  • Asphalt roofing
  • Mining
  • Foundry work
  • Ceramics, clay, and pottery
  • Jewelry manufacturing
  • Dental labs
  • Stone cutting
  • Glass manufacturing
  • Agriculture
  • Shipyards
  • Railroad

For more information on requirements for the OSHA standard, please click here.

Be sure to contact your Summit Loss Prevention consultant if you have any questions or concerns.

  1. OSHA, OSHA’s Respirable Crystalline Silica Standard for General Industry and Maritime, (; accessed Jan. 2, 2019).
  2. Luis Pieretti, EHSToday, Are You Ready for OSHA’s New Respirable Crystalline Silica Standard? Feb. 7, 2017. (; accessed Jan. 2, 2019).
  3. CDC, Preventing Silicosis, (; accessed Jan. 2, 2019).
The information presented in this publication is intended to provide guidance and is not intended as a legal interpretation of any federal, state or local laws, rules or regulations applicable to your business. The loss prevention information provided is intended only to assist policyholders of Summit managed insurers in the management of potential loss producing conditions involving their premises and/or operations based on generally accepted safe practices. In providing such information, Summit Consulting LLC does not warrant that all potential hazards or conditions have been evaluated or can be controlled. It is not intended as an offer to write insurance for such conditions or exposures. The liability of Summit Consulting LLC and its managed insurers is limited to the terms, limits and conditions of the insurance policies underwritten by any of them.
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