On December 12, 2018, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) began to enforce compliance with the updated Beryllium Rule that went into effect on May 20, 2017. The purpose of this updated Rule is to limit employee exposure to beryllium, which is known to cause lung cancer and other chronic beryllium disease.
This updated Rule includes lower permissible exposure limits (PEL) for both an 8-hour time-weighted average (TWA) and 15-minute short term exposure limit (STEL), as well as developed an action level for an 8-hour TWA that triggers the need for monitoring or additional actions. The PEL for an 8-hour TWA is 0.2 ug/m3 and the PEL for a 15-minute STEL is 2.0 ug/m3. The updated Rule also includes an Action Level of 0.1 ug/m3.
Facilities must provide medical surveillance for all employees expected to be exposed at or above the Action Level for more than 30 days per year. Along with conducting air monitoring for Beryllium, the Rule requires facilities to utilize engineering or work practice controls, such as ventilation or enclosures, to minimize employee exposure to airborne Beryllium. If exposure cannot be limited, employees should be properly fitted for respirators that are appropriate for their exposure levels. Facilities must also develop a written exposure control plan and must train employees on the hazards associated with Beryllium exposure.
CTI can help provide air monitoring and help ensure that your facility is in compliance with the updated Beryllium Rule. Please contact us at (770) 263-6330 if you need assistance.