The Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA’s) respirable crystalline silica standard (29 CFR 1926.1153) stipulates that construction workers not be exposed to more than 25 micrograms per cubic meter of air (25 μg/m3 ) containing respirable crystalline silica as an 8-hour time-weighted average (TWA).
Crystalline silica is a mineral found in a number of construction materials, including sand, stone, concrete, brick and mortar. When workers cut, grind, drill or crush this material, airborne dust can result, which poses a significant health threat when inhaled. Silicosis is a potentially deadly lung disease resulting from crystalline silica inhalation. Inhalation can also lead to cancers and other respiratory diseases.
To prevent harmful exposure when using handheld power saws, OSHA launched a video in January that shows how an integrated water delivery system can control silica dust that’s created when cutting certain materials.
Watch the video below courtesy of OSHA: