On Aug. 13, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued 53 Frequently Asked Questions to provide further guidance to employers and employees regarding OSHA’s respirable crystalline silica standard for construction. Through the Construction Industry Safety Coalition, ABC was involved in the formulation of these FAQs.
The FAQs are extensive and organized by topic. A short introductory paragraph is included for each group of questions and answers to provide background information about the underlying regulatory requirements. Employers are encouraged to review all the FAQs. They are available on the OSHA website.
The development of the FAQs stemmed from litigation filed against OSHA by numerous construction industry trade associations, including ABC, challenging the legality of OSHA’s 2016 respirable crystalline silica final rule.
Effective Oct. 23, 2017, OSHA began fully enforcing all appropriate provisions of the Silica in Construction Standard. More background on the 2016 final rule can be found on the OSHA website.
In addition to the FAQs, OSHA has agreed to issue a Request for Information on Table 1 to revise the table to improve its utility. ABC will continue to look for ways to work with OSHA to improve the workability of this significant rule.