Lewes, DE, September 24th, 2012 -- Silica exposure remains a serious threat to several million U.S. workers, including many in the Mid-Atlantic region. Included in this list are more than 100,000 workers in high risk jobs such as abrasive blasting, foundry work, stonecutting, rock drilling, quarry work, and tunneling. Exposure to crystalline silica also occurs during many different construction activities and some manufacturing processes.
Crystalline silica has been classified as a human lung carcinogen. Silicosis is a disease of the lungs due to the breathing of dust containing crystalline silica particles. This dust can cause fibrosis or scar tissue formations in the lungs that reduce the lung's ability to work to extract oxygen from the air.
Crystalline silica is a basic component of soil, sand, granite, and many other minerals. Quartz is the most common form of crystalline silica. Cristobalite and tridymite are two other forms of crystalline silica. All three forms may become respirable size particles when workers chip, cut, drill, or grind objects that contain crystalline silica.
One company that has been helping businesses protect workers from exposure to crystalline silica across Delaware, Maryland and surrounding states is Sussex Environmental Health Consultants (SEHC). “There is no cure for silicosis, prevention is the only answer,” reported Susan White, Ph.D., CMC, President of SEHC. “The seriousness of the health hazards associated with silica exposure is clearly seen by the fatalities and disabling illnesses that continue to occur with many workers exposed to this material. At SEHC we help prevent human exposure by offering testing services to identify if crystalline silica is in air. This information can help companies develop personal protective equipment programs to protect their workers.”
SEHC has sponsored an educational video about silicosis and crystalline silica that can be seen at:
About Sussex Environmental Health Consultants, LLC
SEHC is a certified woman owned business that provides environmental and health and safety consulting services. The company is located in the Mid-Atlantic and services customers nationwide. SEHC provides solutions to clients ranging from homeowners to international Fortune 500 Corporations.