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On Jan. 9, 2017, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a final rule on beryllium exposure. The construction industry is included in the final rule; this was expanded from the proposed rule, which focused on general industry. Beryllium is a lightweight but strong metal used in a number of industries.

The final rule points directly to the construction task of abrasive blasting operations which use slags that contain trace amounts of beryllium. More information on the final rule can be found on OSHA’s website

The agency has delayed the effective date of the final rule to May 20, 2017, to allow further review and consideration. ABC signed onto a letter supporting the extension of the effective date.  However, most of the provisions in the final rule don’t go into effect until March 12, 2018. 

On March 9, ABC and other construction groups filed a petition against the final rule in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. This case along with others is being consolidated to the eighth circuit.  ABC will continue to keep members informed of any legal developments through Newsline.