Silica Dust

Eliminate the dangers of silica dust

Keep your people and facility safe with high-performance, HEPA-filtered industrial vacuums

The dangers of silica dust have been well documented as far back as the 1700s. Workers in many industries have long been familiar with the health risks caused by this common substance.

But it wasn’t until 1971 – when OSHA was first established – that silica dust exposure limits were set for workers on job sites in the U.S. With the release of new, updated standard in June 2016, OSHA has renewed the focus on the proper steps required to protect workers from the threat of silica dust.

As a leader in dust control, Nilfisk has a full line of vacuums well-equipped to help you safely collect silica dust and keep it away from your crew.

Understanding OSHA’s new standard on silica dust

In June 2016, OSHA released an updated standard for silica dust exposure. This standard set a new permissible exposure limit (PEL) of only 50 micrograms of silica dust per cubic meter over eight hours.

That is a drastic reduction from previous limits, and it has raised many questions about compliance and worker safety.

Watch this video to learn what you need to do to comply with the new standard.

OSHA approved cleaning methods to limit silica dust exposure

Compressed air, dry brushing and dry sweeping are prohibited under the new standard. These methods blow the silica dust into the air, making the situation more dangerous. The only approved cleaning methods are:

  • Wet cleaning – using water to prevent dust from becoming airborne
  • High-quality industrial vacuums that meet strict filter requirements

Nilfisk vacuums keep your crew safe

Nilfisk industrial vacuums with HEPA filters meet the OSHA filtration requirements to be considered suitable and safe for silica use. The DOP-tested filters are certified to capture 99.97% of particles down to 0.3 microns.

Specialized Nilfisk vacuums can also be paired with local exhaust ventilation (LEV) systems that attach to power tools and collect dust right at the source to keep it away from your crew.

Safely capture dangerous dust at job sites

Using a vacuum cleaner with proper filtration is one of the easiest ways to prevent the health hazards associated with lead, silica and other dangerous dust.

Traditional shop-style vacuums are just not equipped to prevent dust from escaping out the exhaust vent. That means hazardous particles just keep getting recirculated back into the air that your crew breathes.

There are two main components that ensure proper filtration:

  • DOP-Tested HEPA Filters: Nilfisk HEPA exhaust
    filters capture 99.97% of particles down to 0.3
    microns, providing optimum protection from inhaled
    particles. A DOP-test certificate ensures the filters
    meet the standard as advertised.
  • Filter Cleaning Options: External filter cleaning
    options like Nilfisk’s Push&Clean and InfiniClean
    reduce downtime, extend filter life and prevent
    exposure to toxic dust and debris.