WorkSafe WA Spotlights Silica in Proactive Inspection Program

WorkSafe WA Spotlights Silica in Proactive Inspection Program

The risks of silica came to light in late 2018 when an alarming number of Queensland stonemasons were diagnosed with silicosis

Silicosis is an incurable and potentially fatal lung disease caused by the continuous inhalation of silica dust. Workers in the stone fabrication industry are at particular risk as engineered stone can contain up to 95% crystalline silica.

In response to the crisis in Queensland, WorkSafe WA has been conducting an inspection program with a focus on silica in the stone fabrication industry. So far, inspectors have visited 26 workplaces and issued a total of 206 improvement notices. With the right controls such as wet cutting techniques, appropriate dust removal practices, the use of respirators and dust sampling when required, the disease is almost entirely preventable.

Late last year, WorkSafe WA also issued a Guidance Note entitled Safe stone product fabrication and installation: Protecting workers from silica exposure. It serves as a useful resource for workplaces and covers:

  • The health effects of silica exposure
  • A variety of methods and recommendations for controlling silica exposure 
  • Health surveillance for workers in the industry

Download Guidance Note

You can also read more about the inspection program by clicking here.

For more information about silica monitoring solutions for your workplace, contact Air-Met Scientific on 1800 000 744.



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Date and Time

Wed. 26 Jun 2019

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WorkSafe WA Spotlights Silica in Proactive Inspection Program