Crystalline Silica Identified as ‘Toxic Air Contaminant’ by State of California
California environmental contaminant biomonitoring program report updated.
In a release from February of this year, the State of California identified crystalline silica as an “air contaminant”. Crystalline silica had also been classified as a ‘human lung carcinogen’ in a fact sheet released by OSHA sometime ago. In addition, it is reported that breathing in crystalline silica dust can cause silicosis which can be disabling or potentially fatal.
Silica is actually a naturally occurring mineral which can be found in amorphous or crystal forms. The crystallized form is the one that has been identified as the primary concern when considered as a health hazard to workers. The crystallized form, commonly referred to as ‘crystalline silica’, exists in various forms including: quartz, cristobalite, tridymite and tripoli.
The more common occupational exposures to silica occur in such industries as: abrasive blasting, asphalt pavement manufacturing, blast furnace operations, cement manufacturing, steel working and tunneling to name a select few. Silica exposure continues to be a serious threat to over two million U.S. workers in occupations that are considered ‘higher risk’.
LA Testing’s facility in Los Alamitos is pleased to be able to offer crystalline silica analysis in addition to a full array of other testing capabilities. The asbestos, microbiology, industrial hygiene and newly added materials testing capabilities within the laboratories allow LA Testing to provide unprecedented analytical services to clients in California.
LA Testing operates laboratories in Los Alamitos and Pasadena, California. The laboratories are staffed with some of the industry’s most respected scientists who utilize state-of-the-art equipment to provide analytical answers to clients’ questions. To learn more about crystalline silica please visit www.LATesting.com.
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LA Testing and EMSL Analytical are providers of environmental testing services and products to professionals and the general public. The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies.
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