WSR 17-09-064
[Filed April 18, 2017, 11:14 a.m.]
Subject of Possible Rule Making: The department is conducting rule making related to preventing worker exposure to beryllium and beryllium compounds (as Be). This rule making is in response to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) final rule on beryllium in general industry, construction and maritime. The department does not have any rules on beryllium at this time except for chapter 296-841 WAC, Airborne contaminants and chapter 296-307 WAC, Safety standards for agriculture. Each chapter includes the permissible exposure limits (PEL) for the airborne contaminants table which contains the PELs for beryllium and beryllium compounds (as Be). These tables may be updated as part of this rule making along with other standards that may be impacted. The new beryllium standards will be incorporated into the 800 series.
Statutes Authorizing the Agency to Adopt Rules on this Subject: RCW 49.17.010, 49.17.040, 49.17.050, and 49.17.060.
Reasons Why Rules on this Subject may be Needed and What They Might Accomplish: OSHA issued a final rule on beryllium to prevent chronic beryllium disease and lung cancer in workers by limiting their exposure to beryllium and beryllium compounds. The rule is comprised of three standards, one for General Industry 29 C.F.R. 1910; Construction 29 C.F.R. 1926; and Maritime 29 C.F.R. 1915. The OSHA final rule takes effect May 20, 2017, with incremental effective dates to comply with some of the requirements over a three-year period from OSHA's original effective date. Since this final rule imposes additional or more stringent requirements on employers than existing OSHA standards, state plans must adopt an "at-least-as-effective-as" standard or amendment to their existing standards, or show that they already have an existing "at-least-as-effective" standard.
Other Federal and State Agencies that Regulate this Subject and the Process Coordinating the Rule with These Agencies: As an OSHA-approved state plan, the department is the primary entity to regulate this subject in Washington with certain exceptions pertaining to the maritime industry and United States government operations, in which case OSHA maintains jurisdiction. The Department of Energy (DOE) regulates beryllium exposure for federal and contractor employees who work at DOE sites. DOE published a proposed rule for chronic beryllium disease prevention program (10 C.F.R. Part 850) on July 7, 2016.
Process for Developing New Rule: Parties interested in the formulation of these rules for proposal may contact the individual listed below. The public may also participate by commenting after amendments are proposed by providing written comments or giving oral testimony during the public hearing process.
Interested parties can participate in the decision to adopt the new rule and formulation of the proposed rule before publication by contacting Gail Hughes, Administrative Regulations Analyst, Department of Labor and Industries, Division of Occupational Safety and Health, P.O. Box 44620, Olympia, WA 98504, phone (360) 902-5537, email
April 18, 2017
Joel Sacks