OSHA’s Silica Rule requires employers in the road construction sector to know and control employee exposure to respirable silica. Among the regulations is a requirement to develop and maintain a written silica exposure control plan. This special report discusses this requirement, along with information on identifying common possible silica-generating activities associated with road construction. A sample exposure control plan template is included. For additional resources related to OSHA silica regulations, visit www.AsphaltPavement.org/silica.
As part of their regulatory obligation to provide a safe working environment, OSHA requires under 29 CFR 1926.1153(g)(1) all construction sector employers to develop and implement a written exposure control plan that includes, at a minimum, the following elements:
(i) A description of the tasks in the workplace that involve exposure to respirable crystalline silica;
(ii) A description of the engineering controls, work practices, and respiratory protection used to limit employee exposure to respirable crystalline silica for each task;
(iii) A description of the housekeeping measures used to limit employee exposure to respirable crystalline silica; and
(iv) A description of the procedures used to restrict access to work areas, when necessary, to minimize the number of employees exposed to respirable crystalline silica and their level of exposure, including exposures generated by other employers or sole proprietors.
Also, under 29 CFR 1926.1153(g)(2-4), employers must:
Review and evaluate the effectiveness of the written exposure control plan at least annually and update it as necessary.
Make the written exposure control plan readily available for examination and copying, upon request to covered employees, their representatives, OSHA and NIOSH.
Designate a competent person to make frequent and regular inspections of job sites, materials, and equipment to implement the written exposure control plan.
Download the full report here.