Silica Dust Answered
Silica is the second most common mineral on earth and commonly found in concrete products, bricks, and abrasive blasting materials. When these products are cut, drilled, blasted, mixed, crushed, etc., respirable silica is created. Respirable silica is a dust that is barely visible. Exposure to respirable silica can cause serious health concerns.
Silicosis is a disease caused by breathing in silica dust. When silica enters your lungs the silica crystals are absorbed into the walls of the lung and create scar tissue. Even after no longer being exposed to silica, the damage can progress. Scar tissue continues to build up until the lungs are no longer usable.
Silicosis is an incurable disease and becoming a growing problem in the construction industry. The symptoms of silicosis include dry cough, shortness of breath, scarring, and ultimately lung failure. Silicosis is also linked with tuberculosis, emphysema, pneumonia, and even stomach cancer.
As of June 23, 2017, OSHA will be enforcing a Respirable Crystalline Silica Construction Standard (29 CFG 1926.1153). This standard applies to, ”…all occupational exposures to respirable crystalline silica in construction work, except where employee exposure will remain below 25 micrograms per cubic meter of air (25 μg/m3) as an 8-hour time-weighted average (TWA) under any foreseeable conditions.” (1926.1153(a)) So what does this mean for those of you using Minnich Drills?
Per OSHA’s Silica Construction Standard, Table 1 Task 8, “For tasks performed outdoors only: Use shroud around drill bit with a dust collection system. Dust collector must have a filter with 99% or greater efficiency and a filter cleaning mechanism.” (1926.1153(c)(1)) The Minnich Dust Collection System is Table 1 compliant and meets all requirements of the Silica Standard.
The Minnich Dust Collection Systems is a canister-style dust collector that utilizes a Venturi suction system to remove dust at the source while drilling. The unit can be retro fit to any dowel drilling rig and makes managing silica dust safer and easier for the operator. Each canister accommodates up to two rock drills and offers a 60 sq. meter filter area. Minnich Single Canister Dust Collection System
Minnich Dust Collection System Retro Fit to Dowel Drilling Rig OSHA’s Silica Construction Standard is changing a lot in the construction field, but it’s making a safer environment for its workers. As the changes begin to take place we are ready to help with all of your dust collection questions and needs!
Silica Dust Educational Content
Respirable Crystalline Silica Construction Standard (29 CFG 1926.1153)
Silica Hazard Awareness Training
Silica Exposure Heath Concerns Video
Drilling With VS Without Dust Collection Video