Industry News

Ramp Sink – Corian Custom Drain Assembly and Sink Parts

In this video I go over the pieces and parts needed to create a Corian Ramp Sink. I also show the details of the drain assemble. The drain assemble tends to get the most questions because they are difficult to make. Hope this video helps.


Corian Solid Surface Countertop Repair – Expert Guide

Repairing a Corian solid surface countertop can save a project from the trash bin. This repair consisted of eighty holes drilled in the incorrect location. Plugs were cut on the CNC to perfectly fit the holes.

Matching adhesive is used to glue the plugs into the holes. They are then sanded down flat with the top of the material. Finally, the plugs are sanded and finished to match the surrounding material perfectly.

Corian Solid Surface is the ultimate material with endless possibilities.

Transform your space with Radianz® Quartz: Cirrus Collection

Lotte Advanced Material

Radianz Quartz

Transform your space with Radianz® Cirrus Collection that is the perfect arrangement of color, pattern, and texture, designed to open the door for creative, highly-personalized ideas. Opt for either the glowing flecks of Verona Verde or the mottled, elegant veining of Rapture for the perfect addition to any spaces where both beauty and durability are necessary.

Discover more about the Cirrus Collection and Radianz® here.
Lotte Quartz Surfacing

Integra Adhesive – Zero Sag Seaming Adhesive

Integra Adhesive Surface Bonder

Ask us about our Welcome Program!

Surface Bonder Zero was launched earlier this year and Quartz fabricators love it!

Zero Sag Adhesive allows for fast, clean assembly of countertops. Whether mitering, laminating or installing in the field, Surface Bonder Zero makes it simple. Even vertical wall panels can be joined together with adhesive that stays in place.

If you haven’t tried it yet, you should! We make it easy! Ask us about our Welcome Program to receive 10 cartridges of the color of your choice and a dispenser at a killer price!

Click Here to Find Out More

ISFA Announces Annual Awards

The International Surface Fabricators Association (ISFA) announced the winners of its annual awards at the association’s recent annual meeting and conference in Scottsdale, Ariz. The ISFA awards are chosen by association members and given to those in the industry that stand out as the very best.

Past ISFA Board Member Erica Hussey, of J.C.W. Countertops in Woburn, Mass., was inducted into the ISFA Hall of Fame, joining a long list of esteemed industry professionals. The Hall of Fame Award is given to the individual who has, in the course of his/her career, made significant contributions to the decorative surfacing industry and has demonstrated leadership and commitment to the ideals of ISFA. Hussey is a 2nd generation owner, a 35-year-old fabrication business, proud to have been among the first in New England to fabricate DuPont Corian. From a young age, she took to the business sweeping floors and learning fabrication and sales techniques. Today, Hussey leads the business with a focus on the future and embracing green surfaces, while continuing to excel in solid surface fabrication with an emphasis on commercial work. She has served ISFA through numerous Board of Director positions including in the roles of Treasurer and Secretary, and she has also hosted events at her shop. Hussey is committed to the industry, continuous improvement, and she is dedicated to ISFA.

The other honored winners are:

The Fabricator of the Year Award was given to ROCKin’teriors, a world-class fabricator of a variety of hard surfacing products located in Raleigh, N.C. This is the second time the company has won the award. The Fabricator of the Year is awarded to an individual of a fabricator member company that in the past year has best exemplified the ISFA ideals of quality, innovation, character and exemplary service to ISFA and/or the decorative surfacing industry, with overall excellence. ROCKin’teriors continues to push the envelope on quality, craftsmanship, and service within the surface industry. Laura Grandlienard has diversified her business to cover the spectrum from high-end residential and custom builder work, to ventilated and direct adhere facades. The company excels across both residential and commercial work and no job, no matter the difficulty or technicality, scares this company.

The Associate of the Year Award is given to an associate member company that in the past year has best exemplified the role of servicing the needs of fabricator member companies, and who has best-supported ISFA in all activities. This year’s winner is Caragreen, which exemplifies professional prowess, innovation, and leadership in surfacing. The company has led the charge for sustainable materials, and is a true champion for the environment. Under the leadership of Jessica McNaughton, Caragreen has actively engaged in, and been an advocate for ISFA. In 2019, Caragreen hosted a Roundtable event in Raleigh, N.C., and introduced several new members to the association.

The Innovator Award is for the member firm or individual who goes outside the box to create a product or system that enhances the life or elevates the role of the surface fabricator. The 2018 Winner is INDEKO, founded by Rodrigo Velazquez as the first surface company in Mexico. INDEKO has accelerated the standards for its peers through its commitment to continuous improvement and its embrace of best practices across all products and surfaces. In a unique move, the company brought together various ISFA members to create beautiful solid surface installations in 460 rooms in a Playa Mujeres hotel in Cancun. INDEKO has established itself among the best fabricators in the world through professionalism, excellence in fabrication and ethical business practices.

The Envision Award is given to the manufacturer member that excels in creating something imaginative and special for the surfacing industry. The 2018 winner is Wilsonart for its new THINSCAPE Performance Tops, which are unlike anything in the marketplace. With a sleek, ½-in. thick profile, THINSCAPE Performance Tops are suitable for horizontal residential or commercial applications. The material is easy to work with, and fabricates with dry tools. Manufactured in the United States, THINSCAPE Performance Tops are easy to clean and also impact-, scratch- and moisture-resistant. They are UL GREENGUARD Gold Certified for indoor air quality.

About ISFA: The International Surface Fabricators Association (ISFA) is a not-for-profit trade association dedicated to helping its members become more profitable through education, fostering professionalism and promoting the countertop industry. For more information contact Executive Director Amy Miller at 888-599-ISFA or

Lotte Staron Solid Surface Shower Surround – Video Series

Finally finished the five-part series of the Lotte Staron Shower Surround. In this video series, I show the steps involved to fabricate and install a complete shower surround.

From the prep work to the final accessory installation, these videos will give you a great starting point to start fabricating your own tub and shower surrounds.

Solid surface is the perfect material for tub and shower surrounds, it’s not just for countertops.

Please be sure to like and subscribe. Thanks for watching.

ISFA Member Spotlight – The Countertop Factory Midwest

This article made possible by ISFA, International Surface Fabricators Association. To become a member CLICK HERE for more information.

While many fabrication businesses have histories rooted in cabinetry or related industries, the story behind The Countertop Factory Midwest (TCF) took a much different path.

The founders of the business, Geoffrey Gran (pictured above left) and Bill Heuer (pictured above right), have been best friends since high school, and after graduating college they lived together in Chicago pursuing their respective careers in sales.

A few years later, the two parted ways when Heuer went to Georgetown University to earn his MBA and Gran evolved his career into consulting. After finishing his time at Georgetown, Heuer moved to Cincinnati and went to work for Proctor & Gamble, managing high-profile products and programs while Gran became a founder of a start-up company.

The two kept in touch, often talking about their future, and after eight years Heuer decided he wanted to move back to Chicago with his family, and that’s when they decided they would enjoy starting a business together (and hopefully with huge profits).

“After a long process of weeding out different industries and markets, we settled on countertops,” explained Gran. “We had been lucky enough to befriend two great entrepreneurs, Skip Fritz and Ken Vincitorio, who were already in the countertop business in Florida and North Carolina, respectively. The two showed us all of the things they did right when opening up their shops (small list) and all of the things they did wrong (larger list). That began our education in countertops and our admiration for this industry.”

On July 1, 2005, the two started The Countertop Factory Midwest in a 6,000-sq.-ft. facility, with a van, a case of Corian® solid surface and a desire to succeed. “It was just the two of us calling on businesses that needed our products,” said Gran. “We approached every opportunity with a sales and marketing perspective.”

With their sales backgrounds and some solid effort, before long the two secured a few regular customers that provided them annual revenue to keep them going while they further built the business. “Our goal was simple. Get great employees and treat them great, then let those great employees take care of your great customers,” added Gran. “The end result is a great company.”

Road Map to Success
With nearly 14 years of business now in its history, TCF has come a long way. It now operates out of a 65,000-sq.-ft. facility in the western suburbs of Chicago has 150 dedicated employees and services all of Chicagoland, downstate Illinois, Southern Wisconsin, and Northwest Indiana.

Not only does the company continue to offer solid surface, in order to make it easy for its customers to get the countertops they want from the company, it provides all major surfaces. “We are the only countertop fabricator in Chicago that manufactures all four of the major surfaces in-house: natural stone, quartz/other, solid surface, and laminate,” explained Gran. “In the ‘other’ category we include sintered material, ultra-compact surfaces, porcelain, and green products.”

Looking at the numbers, TCF goes through 170,000 sq. ft. of natural stone per year (about 30 percent of its total volume); 275,000 sq. ft. of quartz/other annually (about 50 percent of its total); 85,000 sq. ft. of solid surface per year (about 15 percent of its total); and 30,000 sq. ft. of laminate annually (about 5 percent of its total).

And not only does it offer all of the premium surfaces, it also goes to market in a variety of different ways, because the company specifically decided it did not want to be beholden to any customer or market and made diversity a priority (both with its customer base and the clients within each segment). The market shares break down with the big box stores being about 40 percent of its business, production builders and commercial work each being about 25 percent of its market, and kitchen & bath dealers and custom builders/retail sales each being about 5 percent of its customer base.

As the company grew in size, product offerings, and service area, one key element it relied upon was taking advantage of the technological advancements available to it. “From the very beginning, we recognized the need for technology and automation in our business in order to keep up with demand while taking great care of our customers,” said Gran.

As such, the company is very serious about this aspect of its fabrication process. In its hard surface facility, the company uses two Park Industries dual-table Fusion sawjets; four large-format Park Industries Titan CNCs; a Park Industries Fastback 2 edge polisher; a BACA Systems MiterExcel miter machine; a HydroClear80 water recycling system by Park Industries; a Water Treatment Solutions filter press for water recycling; a Pathfinder system that takes digital images of every slab (to be used with Slabsmith), and overhead cranes throughout the entire facility.

In its solid surface/laminate shop, TCF has two CNC machines, a thermoforming oven, a v-grooving machine, a custom dust collection system in its finishing area, and a variety of other basic cutting, routing and other equipment required for countertop fabrication. The entire company runs on the Moraware software platform, allowing easy access to all information necessary to run a business. In fact, TCF is completely paperless from the field operations to the office and the fabrication facilities.

Going one step further, the company also offers a variety of value-added services. “In being consistent with our theme to be a single-source provider, we have expanded our services to better assist our customers with their projects,” said Gran. “We have licensed plumbers on staff, as well as experienced tile setters. We also have a commercial millwork facility that offers plastic laminate casework and custom pieces for our commercial customers.”

Additionally, in order to assist customers with a better assortment of materials at fair prices, TCF stocks more than 60 colors in its facility that it can sell at set pricing. This is designed to allow customers the ability to sell the company’s products with ease and confidence, regardless of what material is wanted. Ultimately, it has proven to be a great sales tool for the company and a winning prospect for its clients.

The Differentiators
Obviously, a big differentiator for the company is the breadth of products it works with, which can lead to some unique challenges. “The benefit of working with all materials is that we can service all of our customers’ countertop needs,” explained Gran. “Our customers are busy and because we are a single source for countertops, they only need one vendor to complete their countertop projects [including plumbing and tile setting].”

As for the downside of offering so many options, Gran said, “While we do not consider it a drawback, we do need to have different skillsets for the different product segments, so labor is always a concern. However, with automation and cross-training, we have been successful at offering all of these products, and all with the same great quality.”

Although introducing state-of-the-art equipment allowed the company to increase capacity, reduce labor and improve quality, it sees people (both its employees and those in the industry as a whole) as significant assets.

“We attend all of the industry trade shows, participate in trade association groups, such as Rockheads Group, ISFA, NSI and SFA, and have close relationships with the equipment leaders in our industry like Mike Schlough [president of Park Industries] and Chuck Russo [owner of BACA Systems] to understand the next innovative technologies,” said Gran. “And while many companies talk about their employees as being important, we truly mean it and live it every day. We are a great company today because of all the amazing people that come to work to help make a difference in our customers’ lives. And we transition to an amazing company because of our employees and their efforts to make TCF best-in-class.”

The company recognizes that its advanced machinery, solid employees and industry relationships are critical components to the No. 1 business goal, which is to generate tall profits. But, it sees the generation of mass profit as an opportunity to continue to reinvest in all levels of the company in order to drive it further. That said, these investments don’t stop with employees and machinery.

“We have integrated many different software systems that help us manage our business,” explained Gran. “We have become data analytics experts in order to better understand and improve our business metrics.” These metrics not only help the company to grow, but also to grow smartly and to analyze where improvements are needed, such as maximizing the value of each sale.

“We realized that we were excellent in selling countertops, but really did not focus on options,” Gran expounded. “We recognize how hard it is to get a customer, and it is our responsibility as the countertop experts to make sure we have educated our customers on everything that is available to them. So, we started a program called ‘hot sauce’ where our entire company, at different parts of the project cycle, will make sure to talk to the customer about options, upgrades and available features for their countertops. Once you can get a customer to recognize that their countertops are really an investment [vs. a cost], their view of purchasing options becomes much clearer.”

The “hot sauce” program has created what can only be described as amazing results, with the average upgrade adding 65 percent directly to the bottom line in pure earnings, while incentivizing employees/accounts who participate in selling. “So $100,000 in ‘hot sauce’ sales will add $65,000 in net earnings,” explained Gran. “So, if an average fabrication shop is earning 3 percent EBTIDA, then that $65k is equal to adding $2,167,000 in revenue!”

Those kinds of sales aren’t without plenty of effort, as The Countertop Factory Midwest’s sales team spends 80 percent of its days on the road in front of current and prospective customers, which is obviously paying off. “As a sales and marketing company, we have always relied on a sales staff to find opportunities, build relationships and close deals,” said Gran. “Our staff is professional, well trained and dedicated to customer satisfaction. In fact, our innovative approach has allowed us to create another company where we offer sales and marketing consulting for fellow fabricators.”

TCF has even started a technology company called Fifth Gear Technologies where it develops software applications specifically for fabricators created by fabricators. For example, it has software called SPEEDlabel ( that allows a sawyer to place an individual label complete with part-specific data, a drawing of the part with dimensions, finished profiles and other important data on each part that is cut instead of handwriting or using masking tape. Another product of that offshoot company is an engineering software called SPEEDdraw ( that takes a raw DXF file from a laser measuring device and creates a final shop ticket along with G-code ready files in just a few minutes. According to Gran, not only does this reduce many potential human error elements of measuring and CAD, but it also eliminates a lot of the busy work at the field measure, allowing employees to spend more time with customers.

Looking to the Future and Sharing from the Past
Gran had plenty of perspective gained over his time in the countertop industry, as well as useful advice to offer his contemporaries. “Over the past 14 years, we have seen our hard surface materials increase in popularity,” he explained. “Of course, quartz has taken a major lead over natural stone, but we expect a slight shift back over the next few years as the color palettes change in the design community. Also, any pending tariffs on Chinese quartz will help shift some market share that direction.”

With a company motto of “If you can dream it, we can build it,” it pays for the business to keep an eye on trends and new product developments. “We are very excited about the new products that are being developed by some of the leading companies in our industry,” said Gran. “DuPont is launching a sintered product called Corian Sintered, and Wilsonart is now producing a hard performance product called Thinscape, plus the new colors of solid surface and laminate are wonderful. Porcelain has also hit the design community with force, and we are seeing some pretty amazing aesthetics that were previously not available in traditional materials.

“Listen more than you talk (which is why you have two ears and only one mouth). For anyone who knows me, this a tough one, but I work at it every day,” said Gran by way of advice. “If you hire great employees, let them be great. Do not micromanage them into mediocrity. A majority of the change and improvement that happens at TCF comes from our staff. Your employees have great things to say so listen to them.”

He also said there is a list of four key elements that can improve any business:
• Be honest
• Work with a sense of urgency
• Be compassionate with your employees, customers, and vendors
• Communicate, communicate, communicate

“There are many processes you have to follow to be successful; there is not a magic pill,” said Gran. “But there are some rules that we incorporated into our daily lives, which have proven to be great contributors to our success.”

One main rule is “Don’t be afraid of change, but do be afraid of being stagnant.” He explained this as the process of always trying to innovate, reviewing processes and finding opportunities to be better. “Change really only happens and becomes part of a company’s culture if it is endorsed by management,” he said. “If you make something a daily passion, report it out, and have accountability, then you can affect positive change for a long time.”

Another rule he touched on was “Be open and share.” He described this idea in a couple of different terms, one being that failing to share means no one will know how you are feeling, or if someone is doing a good (or bad) job; and another being if you think that your way is the only possible solution, you are undoubtedly missing out on some great ideas and opportunities.

Sharing some final thoughts, Gran reflected on his path and if knowing what he knows now, would he have still gone into the countertop industry, and without a pause, he said he would. “This industry is hard. Measuring, material handling, manufacturing and installing material that can be fragile can prove to be difficult, but every day we learn and get better. Our industry is still relatively new and we have mountains to climb (and excavate) until this industry is not as volatile.

“We have elected to become very involved in this industry,” he concluded, “It has brought us many great friends and opened up many doors of opportunities.”


Habit Burger Features Lotte Staron and Radianz

Staron® solid surface and Radianz®  quartz are installed in areas where food routinely comes into contact due to its non-porous and durable qualities that help resist any stubborn stains and minor scratches. Staron® Tempest Horizon and Radianz® Ural Gray are prominently featured at Habit Burger locations for the surfaces of their furnishing solutions.

The contemporary design is complemented by the simplicity of Staron® and Radianz®  throughout the restaurant’s dining and cashier areas. Available in a wide range of colors, Staron® and Radianz® help create a signature look that can be extended to other franchise locations.

Achieve the best of style and quality with Staron® solid surface and Radianz® quartz brought to you by LOTTE Advanced Materials USA

For more information – CLICK HERE

Karran Quartz Vanity Bowls

New to the market this month is our first quartz composite vanity bowl. This stunning bowl is available in our six standard colors. With its machined top rim, it can be seamlessly integrated into laminate, solid surface and stone countertops.

Looking for the industry’s first quartz composite vanity bowl for a commercial project but need a specific color? With our quartz composite’s wide array of custom color options, we may be able to give you the perfect color for your next project.

Visit Karran – CLICK HERE

ISFA – Are You in Compliance with OSHA?

This article made possible by ISFA, International Surface Fabricators Association. To become a member CLICK HERE for more information.

Are You in Compliance with OSHA’s New Crystalline Silica Regulations?
By Shannon DeCamp

Most provisions of the Airborne Crystalline Silica standard became enforceable on June 23. During the first 30 days of enforcement, OSHA offered compliance assistance for employers who made good faith efforts to comply with the new standard. However, that window is now closed and it is time to make sure that you are in compliance. Crystalline silica is a common mineral found in both naturally-occurring and manmade materials, including concrete, stone and engineered stone/quartz surfacing.

Silica in Surface Fabrication Shops

OSHA has concluded that for many surface fabrication shops, the current methods commonly used to limit silica exposure do not adequately protect worker health. Fabricating, finishing and installing concrete, natural and engineered stone countertops can release hazardous levels of tiny crystalline silica dust particles into the air that workers breathe. Workers operating powered hand tools, such as saws, grinders and high-speed polishers, have some of the highest silica dust exposures. Workers involved in manufacturing stone or concrete countertops may also be exposed to silica dust when opening bags of ground quartz, moving or mixing bulk raw materials, cleaning and scraping mixers, cleaning dust collector bag houses or changing filter bags. Both the workers doing these tasks and anyone in the area where silica dust is present may be exposed and face lifelong health consequences.

Employers must ensure that employees’ exposures to respirable crystalline silica do not exceed the Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL), which is 50 µg/m³ calculated as an 8-hour TWA. This means that over the course of any 8-hour work shift, exposure can fluctuate, but the average exposure cannot exceed 50 µg/ m³. Employee exposure means the exposure to airborne, respirable crystalline silica that would occur if the employee were not wearing a respirator. The action level (25 µg/ m³ calculated as an 8-hour TWA) is the point at which employers must start to do exposure assessments and medical surveillance.

Exposure Assessment

The employer can choose from two options for assessing exposures: the performance option; or the scheduled monitoring option. The performance option gives employers the flexibility to determine the 8-hour TWA exposure for each employee based on any combination of air monitoring data or objective data that can accurately characterize employee exposures to respirable crystalline silica.

Objective data is information that demonstrates employee exposure to respirable crystalline silica associated with a particular product, material, process, task or activity. The data must reflect workplace conditions that closely resemble, or could result in higher exposures than, the conditions in the employer’s current operations. Examples of objective data are information such as air monitoring data from industry-wide surveys, calculations based on the composition of a substance, and historical air monitoring data collected by the employer.

The scheduled monitoring option defines when and how often employers must perform monitoring to measure employee exposures. When following the scheduled monitoring options, employers must make sure that the results represent the employee’s TWA exposure to respirable crystalline silica over an 8-hour workday and that samples are collected from the employee’s breathing zone outside of respirators, so they represent the exposure that would occur without the use of a respirator. Employers using the scheduled monitoring option must conduct initial monitoring as soon as work begins so that they are aware of exposure levels and where control measures are needed. How often monitoring must be done depends on the results of initial monitoring.

■ If exposures are below the action level, no further monitoring is required.

■ If exposures are at or above the action level, but at or below the PEL, monitoring must be repeated within six months.

■ If exposures are above the PEL, the employer must repeat monitoring within three months.

■ When two non-initial monitoring results taken consecutively, at least seven days apart but within six months of each other, are below the action level, monitoring may be discontinued as long as no changes occur that could affect exposure levels.

■ If there is any change in process, materials, personnel, control equipment or work practices that could reasonably be expected to result in new or additional exposures at or above the action level, the employer must reassess. Employers must notify each affected employee of the results of the exposure assessment within 15 working days of completing it. Each employee must be notified in writing, or the results may be posted in a location that all affected employees can access. When an assessment reveals exposures above the PEL, the notification must also describe the corrective action the employer is taking to reduce employee exposures to or below the PEL.

Regulated Areas

Employers must establish regulated areas where airborne concentrations of respirable crystalline silica can be reasonably expected to exceed the PEL. These areas must be marked off from the rest of the workplace and a sign must be posted at each entrance. Employers must limit access to these areas only to authorized employees.

Engineering and Work Practice Controls

Employers must use engineering and work practice controls to reduce employee exposure to respirable crystalline silica at or below the PEL unless the employer can demonstrate that such controls are not feasible. If these engineering controls and work practices are not able to reduce employee exposures at or below the PEL, employers must still use feasible controls to reduce exposures to the lowest possible level and then use respiratory protection along with these controls.

The main engineering controls for silica are the use of wet methods and local exhaust ventilation. Wet methods apply water or foam at the point of dust generation to keep dust from getting into the air. Local exhaust ventilation removes dust by capturing it where it is created. Another engineering control separates employees from the dust source by containing the dust or isolating employees in a control booth.

Work practice controls involve doing a task in a way that reduces the likelihood or levels of exposure. Employees must know the appropriate work practices for maximizing the effectiveness of controls and minimizing exposures.

Respiratory protection

Engineering and work practice controls are the preferred methods for minimizing exposure as they actually reduce the level of crystalline silica in the air. When all feasible measures are still not enough, respirators must be used. If respirators are required, you will need a complete respiratory protection program that complies with OSHA’s Respiratory Protection standard (29 CFR 1910.134).

Written Exposure Control Plan

All employers covered by the standard must develop and implement a written exposure control plan. This plan must describe all workplace exposures and ways to reduce those exposures, such as engineering controls, work practices and housekeeping methods. This plan must be reviewed at least once a year and updated as necessary. Affected employees have the right to view or copy this plan.


All employers covered by the Respirable Crystalline Silica standard must avoid certain housekeeping practices. When cleaning up dust that could contribute to employee exposure, employers must prohibit dry brushing and sweeping, unless methods such as wet sweeping and HEPA-filtered vacuuming are not feasible. Employers must also prohibit cleaning surfaces or clothing with compressed air, unless it is used together with a ventilation system that effectively captures the dust cloud or no other cleaning method is feasible.

Medical surveillance

Medical surveillance is intended to:

■ Identify respirable crystalline silicarelated diseases so that employees with those diseases can take action to protect their health;

■ Determine if an employee has any condition, such as a lung disease, that might make him or her more sensitive to respirable crystalline silica exposure; and

■ Determine the employee’s fitness to use respirators.

The standard specifies which employees must be offered medical surveillance, when and how often the examinations must be offered, and the tests that make up medical examinations. The standard also specifies the information the employer must give to the physician or licensed healthcare professional (PLHCP) who conducts the examinations and the information that the employer must ensure the PLCHP provides to the employee and employer.

Employee Training

Employers must train and inform employees covered by the silica standard about respirable crystalline silica hazards and the method the employer uses to limit their exposures. The employer must ensure that employees trained under the silica standard can demonstrate knowledge and understanding of at least:

1. Health hazards associated with respirable crystalline silica exposure.

2. Specific workplace tasks that could expose employees to respirable crystalline silica.

3. Specific measures the employer is implementing to protect employees from respirable crystalline silica exposure, including engineering controls, work practices and respirators to be used. This should include recognizing signs that the controls may not be working effectively.

4. The contents of the Respirable Crystalline Silica standard, including the standard’s requirements.

5. The purpose and description of the medical surveillance program required by the standard.

Employees must be trained at the time they are assigned to a position involving exposure to respirable crystalline silica. Additional training must be provided as often as necessary to ensure that employees know and understand respirable crystalline silica hazards and the protections available in their workplace.


Employers must make and keep the following records:

■ An accurate record of all air monitoring performed to comply with the standard;

■ An accurate record of any objective data used to comply with the standard; and

■ An accurate record for each employee provided medical surveillance under the standard.

Construction Tasks

Installation and fabrication done at jobsites is covered under OSHA Construction standards. The new construction standard for silica provides a table of specified controls employers can follow. If employers follow these specifications, they can be sure that they are providing their workers with the required level of protection. Employers may provide alternative methods of protection as long as they can prove that their methods effectively reduce their workers’ exposure to silica dust.

It is important to keep in mind that, as with all new regulations, Silica will be a focus area for OSHA. It is best to get a head start on compliance immediately, not only to protect your business, but, most importantly, to protect your most important asset – your employees.

About the Author

Shannon DeCamp is Client Services Manager for TechneTrain, Inc. TechneTrain has a full line of safety training programs and reference manuals specifically designed for the surface fabrication industry, including a turnkey employee training program for the new airborne crystalline silica regulations. These products are available from ISFA at discounted prices. For further information regarding OSHA Compliance requirements for the surface fabrication industry, visit, or contact TechneTrain, Inc. at (800) 852-8314.