In response to requests from interested parties, federal labor officials have extended the deadline to comment on its proposed revisions for the workplace lead-exposure standard by two months. It is now Oct. 28.

The U.S. Dept. of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced its proposed rulemaking June 28 in the Federal Register, with a deadline to comment by Aug. 29. Since then, trade groups including the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA), American Foundry Society and Copper Development Association, among others, responded to OSHA by asking for more time to comment because of the complexity of the issue and members’ scheduling difficulties. 

"Given where the comment period falls during the summer months, it will be extremely difficult to obtain important feedback from construction contractors in general, but specifically for NRCA’s roofing contractor members, who are particularly busy this time of year," Thomas Shanahan, vice president of NRCA, wrote in a letter to OSHA. 

In a follow-up notice, OSHA officials said they would extend the deadline.

As ENR previously reported, the proposed revisions would amend OSHA’s lead standards for construction and general industry to call for medical removal of workers with a blood lead level that is lower than under the current standards. Research conducted since the standards were first implemented has shown adverse health effects at lower BLLs than what they cover, officials said. 

OSHA is seeking input on 61 questions related to managing BLLs, establishing “clean areas” where no lead-containing materials are present, handling lead paint, use of personal protective equipment, hygiene practices and other related topics. 

Public comments can be made via