Last Revised: December 14, 2020
Crystalline Silica is a naturally occurring mineral found in a variety of building products including natural stone products, concrete, mortar, brick, block, pavers, countertops, mineral cement siding and fire/chemical resistant panels.
When these products are ground, pulverized or cut with high speed blades, the crystalline silica particles are released in large quantities. Without controls, the crystalline silica particles can be inhaled deeply into the lungs.
Inhalation of crystalline silica particles can result in lung cancer, kidney disease and other debilitating respiratory diseases including silicosis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
The onset of diseases caused by silica exposure commonly occurs many years after exposure.
It is critical to control and minimize exposure to crystalline silica.
Penn's Silica Exposure Control Program is presented to provide information on the methods and procedures required for Penn employees to control and minimize exposure to crystalline silica.