Silica Dust

The new OSHA Silica Standard scheduled to go into effect in September is making a difference, and so are our efforts to educate members and signatory contractors about the hazard, and ways to reduce or eliminate the risk for breathing in silica dust.

  • 55% of the members surveyed said they are aware of OSHA’s new silica dust Standard, and the data suggest that contractors are already implementing it. 85% of the members surveyed reported that, in the past year, they were provided with a vacuum or water system to control the dust when performing silica-generating work. What’s particularly important is the increase in the percentage of members who said they are “always” provided with a vacuum or water system, up from only 19% in 2011 to 26% in 2014 to 61% in 2017 – a 35% increase in just three years.

  • When asked whether additional information about the Standard would be helpful, 55% said yes, with most asking for more information on the health risks of silica exposure and how to protect themselves.
  • To ensure that workers and contractors have ready access to the latest information, ICE and BAC joined with other contractor associations, unions, and manufacturers in supporting the development of a one-stop website on silica. When the website was launched in 2012, it had just under 1,000 visits per month on average. Today, that figure has grown to more than 14,000 sessions per month.