Silica Safety Resources for Stone Fabricators
Silicosis Outbreak from Stone Countertop Fabrication Work
Two California workers died in 2018 at the ages of 36 and 38 from severe silicosis. Both had jobs at a stone countertop fabrication company, working on engineered stone which can contain more than 90% silica. Four more employees of this company were checked and found to also have silicosis. Twelve additional stone countertop workers have also been diagnosed with silicosis in Colorado, Texas, and Washington. Read an MMWR article about the outbreak.
To help prevent silica exposures in countertop fabrication work, the Occupational Health Branch has developed the following educational materials:
If your company needs help measuring silica exposure or complying with the
Cal/OSHA silica standards:
- Contact your workers' compensation insurance company.
- Call Cal/OSHA Consultation at (800) 963-9424 for a free, confidential visit.
- Find an industrial hygienist through a searchable list of consultants provided by the
American Industrial Hygiene Association.
Additional Resources About Silica Exposure Prevention
OSHA hazard alert (PDF) for manufactured and stone countertop installers
Note: This alert contains useful technical information. However, the Permissible Exposure Level for silica dust has been lowered since this publication was released and there are now additional requirements under the new silica standards.
Silica safety website for controlling silica exposure in construction
NIOSH silica topic page
Health Advisory on Stone Fabrication Hazards (PDF) - OHB advisory on severe lung disease
Silica – Notes from the Field: Silicosis in a Countertop Fabricator – Texas, 2014 – MMWR
Toxic Dusts – Silica (PDF) | Spanish - BuildSafe tailgate training safety cards