Michigan Lowers Acceptable Blood Lead Levels for Workers 
New rules issued by the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration, MIOSHA, lower acceptable blood lead levels for workers in the state. The rules, which became effective on Dec. 11, 2018, require that employees be removed from lead exposure when their BLL reaches 30 µg/dL. Under the new rules, employees may not return to work involving lead exposure until their BLL is below 15 µg/dL. Michigan’s previous rules allowed workers to have BLLs of 50 to 60 µg/dL before they had to be removed from lead exposure, and workers could previously return to work when their BLL was below 40 µg/dL. According to MIOSHA’s press release, the average BLL in the general population is 1.12 µg/dL.  "Existing federal OSHA standards for lead—as well as the previous MIOSHA standards for lead—are based on scientific information that is more than 35 years old,” the agency’s press release reads. MIOSHA is implementing a 60-day temporary stay on the enforcement of the new BLLs to allow employers time to ensure compliance with the requirements. Further details are available in the press release. OSHA’s lead standards require workers to be removed from lead exposure when BLLs are equal to or greater than 50 µg/dL (construction) or 60 µg/dL (general industry) and allow workers to return to work when their BLL is below 40 µg/dL. In 2015, NIOSH lowered its definition of an elevated BLL in adults from 10 µg/dL to 5 µg/dL.
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