ES&H Manual



6683 Silica Safety Program



Jefferson Lab has determined that working with silica carries an unmitigated Risk Code >2. At a minimum all tasks involving silica are discussed with the supervisor prior to commencement. An Operational Safety Procedure (OSP) is written for any work considered to be Risk Code >2 in accordance with ES&H Manual Chapter 3210 Work Planning, Control, and Authorization Process.


1.0            Purpose


Silica, when it becomes airborne (dust particulates), poses a serious health hazard. This program addresses techniques for mitigating silica exposure for activities that occurs at Jefferson Lab including, but not limited to: sandblasting, grinding, cutting, mixing, and drilling of concrete, brick, grout, and rock; miscellaneous sand and gravel operations; and removal of furnace insulation[1].


This program satisfies applicable federal, state, and local requirements as outlined in ES&H Manual Chapter 2410 Appendix T1 Hazard Issues List.


2.0            Scope


For the purposes of this program “silica” refers to respirable crystalline, quartz, cristobalite, and tridymite. Contact Industrial Hygiene for guidance when using other forms. 


This program applies to activities at Jefferson Lab that would commonly occur during day-to-day operations. This program complies with requirements of 29 CFR 1910.1053.  Construction activities involving silica will be review by the Silica SME to determine if requirements of 29 CFR 1926.1153 have been met.


Other silica mitigation techniques, utilized for larger projects, may be considered during a Jefferson Lab facility design or modification review. Refer to ES&H Manual Chapter 3110 Facility Design and Modification Review.


Table 1: Required Silica Safety Training by Job Classification

Training Course

Qualified Silica Worker

Silica Dust Hazards




Depending on the complexity of the activity (i.e. indoors, confined space), Industrial Hygiene may require "hold points" to verify control adequacy of engineered, administrative controls, and/or Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Involve Jefferson Lab Industrial Hygiene in work planning activities.  


3.0            Responsibilities

NOTE:           Management authority may be delegated to a task qualified Jefferson Lab employee at the discretion of the responsible manager.


3.1              Trained Worker

·         Complete and maintain appropriate training

o   SAF138 Silica Dust Hazards .

o   Medical monitoring as required per Chapter 6800-T1 Medical Monitoring.

·         Perform work activities within hazard controls.

·         If work conditions change or the mitigations do not appear to be effective (i.e. visible dust), request a hazard evaluation of work activities from Industrial Hygiene.


3.2              Supervisor/Subcontracting Officer’s Technical Representative (SOTR)/Sponsor:

·         Provide a complete Work Plan in accordance with process steps.

·         Assign only Trained Workers to silica work.


3.2.1        SOTR also:

·         Inform subcontractors that their Activity Hazard Analysis (AHA) must include the planned technique(s) to mitigate silica exposure and the program used to train workers.

·         If provided, submit subcontractor’s silica AHA to Jefferson Lab’s Silica Subject Matter Expert (see ES&H Manual Chapter 2410 Appendix T1 Hazard Issues List – Silica) for approval prior to commencement of work. 


3.3              Industrial Hygiene

·         Perform silica work/area hazard evaluation as appropriate.


3.4              Silica Subject Matter Expert

·         Oversee the on-site silica training program.

·         Review and evaluate the effectiveness of the program at least annually and update it as necessary.

·         Make silica equivalent training determination for Subcontractor Programs.

·         Maintain listing of Trained Workers in accordance with ES&H Manual Chapter 4200 ES&H Training Overview.


4.0            Technical Appendices


4.1              Silica Work Requirements

ES&H Manual Chapter 6683 Appendix T1 Silica Work Requirements provides Jefferson Lab’s minimum requirements when working with silica including: planning, actual activities, and clean-up.


4.2              Silica Training

No one at Jefferson Lab, including subcontractors, may authorize or perform work involving silica unless they are properly trained. ES&H Manual Chapter 6683 Appendix T2 Silica Training presents the process steps used to obtain and record the training required for work involving silica. 


5.0            Revision Summary


Revision 1.0 – 02/24/17 – Updated TPOC from D.Owen to J.Williams; updated to comply with new OSHA standard re: CATS Issue #PD-2016-01-01

Revision 0.3 – 01/07/16 – Updated Scope to include Industrial Hygiene for guidance in work planning activities

Periodic Review – 06/04/15 – No changes per TPOC

Revision 0.2 – 05/20/14 – Added Required Safety Training Table

Revision 0.1 – 06/28/13 – Added responsibility to request hazard evaluation of work to 3.1 Trained Worker and clarified responsibility for 3.3 Industrial Hygiene per M.Logue

Revision 0.0 – 06/08/12 – Initial content











ESH&Q Division

Jennifer Williams





This document is controlled as an on-line file.  It may be printed but the print copy is not a controlled document.  It is the user’s responsibility to ensure that the document is the same revision as the current on line file.  This copy was printed on 3/1/2017.

[1] Furnace insulation (refractory ceramic fibers/synthetic vitreous fibers (RCF/SVF)) when exposed for long periods at high temperatures (1100C/1900F) convert to a form of silica and must be properly controlled.  Contact Industrial Hygiene for detailed mitigation requirements.