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AFS Submits Dozens of Questions to OSHA on the Crystalline Silica Rulemaking

February 13, 2018

In January 2018, AFS submitted 70 questions to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to clarify various aspects of the Agency’s final crystalline silica rulemaking which is slated to go into effect for general industry on June 23, 2018. AFS, in conjunction with the society's safety and health committee, drafted questions related to key components of the rulemaking involving, but not limited to sweeping, compressed air, regulated areas, exposure assessments, respiratory protection/air supplied hoods, engineering controls, and written control exposure plans.

OSHA staff is in the process of reviewing these questions, and AFS plans to have an initial meeting at the end of February. AFS is continuing to work with these federal officials to make improvements to the rule and how it is enforced to achieve the meaningful safety and health improvements. The goal is for OSHA to incorporate the questions into a final set of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) which would provide guidance to employers and employees regarding the interpretation of various provisions of the rule and how OSHA intends to enforce certain requirements of the standard. The final FAQs would ultimately be incorporated into an enforcement directive prepared by the agency for the rule, as it applies to general industry.

For additional information on OSHA’s silica rule, AFS has created a Crystalline Silica Resource Page that contains a host of information on the rulemaking and steps foundries need to take to come into compliance. AFS will be hosting monthly webinars starting in March to provide more detailed information on implementation.

The American Foundry Society is a dynamic technical and advocacy organization that serves and represents the $33 billion metalcasting industry. AFS is the only association serving the entire industry, including all metals and processes, with a three-part focus on advocacy, education and innovation. AFS also publishes Modern Casting and Metal Casting Design and Purchasing magazines and presents Metalcasting Congress and CastExpo, the largest trade events in North America. Founded in 1896, the organization is based in Schaumburg, Illinois, with an advocacy office in Washington, D.C. More information is available at afsinc.org.

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