WASHINGTON, DC – The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will begin enforcement of the final rule on occupational exposure to beryllium in the construction industry on May 11, 2018. According to a March 2 news release, the enforcement date was previously set for March 12, 2018, but this new timeframe aims to ensure stakeholders are aware of their compliance obligations under the final rule.
OSHA issued a final rule on beryllium exposure on January 9, 2017. The construction industry was included in the final rule in an expansion of the proposed rule, which previously focused on general industry. The final rule points directly to the construction task of abrasive blasting operations that use slags that contain trace amounts of beryllium. More information on the final rule can be found on OSHA’s website.
On June 27, 2017, OSHA issued a proposed rule to revoke the ancillary provisions of the final rule for the construction and shipyard sectors included in the January 2017 final rule, but retain the permissible exposure limit of 0.2 micrograms per cubic meter of air as an eight-hour weighted average and the short-term exposure limit of 2.0 micrograms per cubic meter of air, which is fifteen minutes. ABC submitted comments on the proposed rule on Aug. 28, 2017, and commented as a member of the Construction Industry Safety Coalition.
According to the Trump administration’s Spring 2018 Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions, OSHA plans to publish a final rule to revoke the ancillary provisions for the construction and shipyard sectors in December 2018.
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Reprinted from Associated Builders and Contractors Newsline, May 9, 2018. Copyright 2018. All rights reserved.