With OSHA moving forward with promulgation of a comprehensive rule for crystalline silica in August 2013 a renewed interest in an old occupational disease will require industrial hygienists to become familiar with the requirements of the rule and the steps in preventing this disease. This was the message delivered by NISA members Andrew O'Brien (Unimin Corporation), Jamie Robinson (Unimin Corporation), Andy Cecala (NIOSH) and Robert Glenn (Glenn Consulting Group) at a recent Professional Development Course presented as part of the American Industrial Hygiene Conference and Exhibition (AIHce 2015) being held this week in Salt Lake City, UT. The course described the pulmonary fibrotic disease silicosis, which is associated with the inhalation and pulmonary deposition of crystalline silica. The course reviewed the recent scientific evidence related to silicosis. Recommendations for conducting dust surveys and medical surveillance for workers exposed to crystalline silica was presented along with other compliance methods that will be imposed by the OSHA Silica Standard. Recent developments in exposure quantification and exposure troubleshooting were presented and discussed. Control methods that have been found effective in reducing silica exposures in the industrial sand industry, and which are directly transferable to other industrial settings were offered.
To view the extensive slide deck used during the course, click here