Table 1

Estimated silica exposure categories determined from occupational questionnaire responses

Duration (years) of work in stone benchtop industry
≤2>2 to ≤4>4 to ≤6>6
Highest dry processing exposure intensity reportedNever (0%)LLMM
Rarely (1%–9%)LLMM
Sometimes (10%–24%)MHHH
Frequently (25%–49%)HHHVH
Very frequently (50%–99%)VHVHVHVH
Always (100%)VHVHVHVH
  • Duration (years) was calculated from the current year, or year the worker left the stone benchtop industry, minus the year of commencing work in the stone benchtop industry, or alternatively calculation of cumulative years if work was intermittent. Highest exposure intensity was determined from the response to ‘What proportion of time have you spent doing dry work or near someone else doing dry work (bystander) exposure since starting this job?’ and identification of the job with the highest exposure regardless of duration.

  • H, high; L, low; M, medium; VH, very high.