How to Properly Dispose of Concrete Dust (Silica)

How to Properly Dispose of Concrete Dust Silica

Filtering out silica dust concrete dust on the jobsite doesn’t do us a whole lot of good if we’re emptying it back into the air trying to dispose of it. So, how do we go about disposing of concrete dust (silica dust) without causing more problems than we solved? We recently talked to Jim Bohn, the Director of Strategic Marketing at Robert Bosch Tool Corporation. He told us about some of the finer points of OSHA Table 1 compliance. Inevitably, how to properly dispose of concrete dust came up, and this is what we learned.

What Is the Proper Disposal Procedure for Concrete Dust?

Every user who creates respirable silica dust must understand their responsibility in the collection and also disposal of silica dust. First of all, it’s highly recommended that you use a fleece bag. These bags usually incorporate a multi-ply fabric design. This helps manage air equilibrium while collecting 0.3 micron or larger dust particles.

Bosch Cordless HEPA Dust Collector

Most fleece (and even plastic) bags also contain some sort of port-closing mechanism for containing concrete dust prior to when you dispose of it. This keeps the dust in after removing the bag from the vacuum canister’s port.

festool dust extractor bag closure system
On this Festool bag, you pull up on the tab to close off the opening and protect yourself from silica dust when disposing of the bag.

Finally, the fleece bag has enough structural integrity to withstand the weight of the collected dust. Remember, you’re collecting concrete dust on the jobsite. You don’t want these bags to tear.

Can I Dump a Full Dust Collection Bag Into a Dumpster?

While “dump” is probably the wrong choice of words, you can take a dust collection bag and place it in a dumpster. Keeping the dust contained remains an important strategy. Because of this, you’ll want to avoid exposing the bag to potential damage or breakage. It’s important to make sure that the bag is only around 80% full, or less. You’ll also want to avoid dumping other items on top of it. Disposing of concrete dust doesn’t need to be rocket science, but you’ll want to take precautions against the bag breaking open.

how to dispose of concrete dust

What About Jobsite Dust from Surrounding Work Areas?

Dust generated in and around the jobsite must be compliant with the established control plan for that site. You should report any levels that exceed the dust control plan immediately. After all, it really doesn’t matter who or what creates the concrete dust on the jobsite, everyone needs to be safe from exposure. Knowing how to dispose of concrete dust is important—but only one aspect of total dust control.

Special thanks to Jim Bohn, Director of Strategic Development – North America, Robert Bosch Tool Corporation for providing input and feedback on this article. Jim Bohn is responsible for driving the creation and rollout of Bosch power tool products in the U.S. and Canada. In addition, he assists the company’s sales organization in providing the products, services, and training programs to meet the needs of construction professionals.

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