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WAC 296-850-115

Exposure assessment.

(1) General. The employer must assess the airborne exposure of each employee who is or may reasonably be expected to be exposed to airborne beryllium in accordance with either the performance option in subsection (2) of this section or the scheduled monitoring option in subsection (3) of this section.
(2) Performance option. The employer must assess the 8-hour TWA exposure and the fifteen-minute short-term exposure for each employee on the basis of any combination of air monitoring data and objective data sufficient to accurately characterize airborne exposure to beryllium.
(3) Scheduled monitoring option.
(a) The employer must perform initial monitoring to assess the 8-hour TWA exposure for each employee on the basis of one or more personal breathing zone air samples that reflect the airborne exposure of employees on each shift, for each job classification, and in each work area.
(b) The employer must perform initial monitoring to assess the short-term exposure from fifteen-minute personal breathing zone air samples measured in operations that are likely to produce airborne exposure above the STEL for each work shift, for each job classification, and in each work area.
(c) Where several employees perform the same tasks on the same shift and in the same work area, the employer may sample a representative fraction of these employees in order to meet the requirements of this subsection. In representative sampling, the employer must sample the employee(s) expected to have the highest airborne exposure to beryllium.
(d) If initial monitoring indicates that airborne exposure is below the action level and at or below the STEL, the employer may discontinue monitoring for those employees whose airborne exposure is represented by such monitoring.
(e) Where the most recent exposure monitoring indicates that airborne exposure is at or above the action level but at or below the TWA PEL, the employer must repeat such monitoring within six months of the most recent monitoring.
(f) Where the most recent exposure monitoring indicates that airborne exposure is above the TWA PEL, the employer must repeat such monitoring within three months of the most recent 8-hour TWA exposure monitoring.
(g) Where the most recent (noninitial) exposure monitoring indicates that airborne exposure is below the action level, the employer must repeat such monitoring within six months of the most recent monitoring until two consecutive measurements, taken seven or more days apart, are below the action level, at which time the employer may discontinue 8-hour TWA exposure monitoring for those employees whose exposure is represented by such monitoring, except as otherwise provided in subsection (4) of this section, reassessment of exposure.
(h) Where the most recent exposure monitoring indicates that airborne exposure is above the STEL, the employer must repeat such monitoring within three months of the most recent short-term exposure monitoring until two consecutive measurements, taken seven or more days apart, are below the STEL, at which time the employer may discontinue short-term exposure monitoring for those employees whose exposure is represented by such monitoring, except as otherwise provided in subsection (4) of this section, reassessment of exposure.
(4) Reassessment of exposure. The employer must reassess airborne exposure whenever a change in the production, process, control equipment, personnel, or work practices may reasonably be expected to result in new or additional airborne exposure at or above the action level or STEL, or when the employer has any reason to believe that new or additional airborne exposure at or above the action level or STEL has occurred.
(5) Methods of sample analysis. The employer must ensure that all air monitoring samples used to satisfy the monitoring requirements of this subsection are evaluated by a laboratory that can measure beryllium to an accuracy of plus or minus twenty-five percent within a statistical confidence level of ninety-five percent for airborne concentrations at or above the action level.
(6) Employee notification of assessment results.
(a) Within fifteen working days after completing an exposure assessment in accordance with this subsection, the employer must notify each employee whose airborne exposure is represented by the assessment of the results of that assessment individually in writing or post the results in an appropriate location that is accessible to each of these employees.
(b) Whenever an exposure assessment indicates that airborne exposure is above the TWA PEL or STEL, the employer must describe in the written notification the corrective action being taken to reduce airborne exposure to or below the exposure limit(s) exceeded where feasible corrective action exists but had not been implemented when the monitoring was conducted.
(7) Observation of monitoring.
(a) The employer must provide an opportunity to observe any exposure monitoring required by this standard to each employee whose airborne exposure is measured or represented by the monitoring and each employee's representative(s).
(b) When observation of monitoring requires entry into an area where the use of personal protective clothing or equipment (which may include respirators) is required, the employer must provide each observer with appropriate personal protective clothing and equipment at no cost to the observer and must ensure that each observer uses such clothing and equipment.
(c) The employer must ensure that each observer follows all other applicable safety and health procedures.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 49.17.010, 49.17.040, 49.17.050, 49.17.060, and chapter 49.17 RCW. WSR 18-17-156, ยง 296-850-115, filed 8/21/18, effective 12/12/18.]
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