OSHA delays silica safety standard for construction industry

OSHA delays silica safety standard for construction industry

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has announced a three-month delay in enforcement of the crystalline silica standard for the construction industry.

The agency said the delay of the enforcement rule, scheduled to begin on June 23, to Sept. 23 was because of the need to conduct additional outreach and provide educational materials and guidance for employers.

The agency has determined that additional guidance is necessary due to the unique nature of the requirements in the construction standard.

According to OSHA, employers in the construction industry are expected to continue to take steps either to come into compliance with the new permissible exposure limit, or to implement specific dust controls for certain operations as provided in Table 1 of the standard. Construction employers should also continue to prepare to implement the standard’s other requirements, including exposure assessment, medical surveillance and employee training.