Do you work with manufactured stone?
Posted by SafeWork NSW
on 16 July 2018
Over the past five years, there has been an average of nine reported cases of silicosis a year in NSW and many cases are in the manufactured stone industry.
This industry involves newer engineered stone products, such as caesarstone for bathroom and kitchen benchtops. It also includes bricks, roof tiles and concrete products, which also contain crystalline silica.
When disturbed by cutting, sanding, blasting or grinding, crystalline silica dust is released and can get into a worker's lungs and lead to a disease called silicosis.
The disease is entirely preventable.
You just need to have adequate ventilation systems and dust capture systems on portable tools, wet down stone before cutting, use masks and respirators and never use compressed air to clean-up dust.
You should also do regular air monitoring to make sure crystalline silica dust is not exceeding the required standard, and monitor your workers' health.
Author: SafeWork NSW