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Crystalline silica is a mineral that can be found in earth’s crust and can also be found in common materials such as concrete, ceramics, artificial stone, and many other products. Because crystalline silica is a very small particle, it is easily inhaled and causes serious diseases. Diseases such as silicosis (incurable lung disease that leads to disability and death), lung cancer, COPD, and kidney disease can be caused by respirable crystalline silica. It is important to be mindful of the harmful effects of silica exposure and be proactive in preventing unnecessary exposure to workers.
OSHA has recently published new resources to inform and protect workers from silica exposure. These resources include frequently asked questions, training videos, and also a PowerPoint presentation for training in respirable silica in construction.
Visit the pages below for helpful information on silica in construction.