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A Rock Products Special Report: Refuting the Flawed Michigan State University Silicosis Study

June 23, 2022 Rock Products News
A controversial study by a Michigan State University (MSU) research assistant – “Evaluation of Silicosis, Asthma and COPD Among Sand and Gravel and Stone Surface Mine Workers” – that suggests an increase in doctor visits for shortness of breath among long-term sand and gravel mine workers in the state compared to the rate for production workers in other industries – is fundamentally flawed, according to Rock Products safety contributor Joseph McGuire. The study appeared in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. McGuire has authored a rebuttal – “Silicosis, Asthma, COPD and Michigan’s Sand, Gravel and Stone Miners” – that refutes most of the findings in the original study.
McGuire’s research validates what Doug Needham, the executive director of the Michigan Aggregates Association, said in response to the study: “Miners who are working in active sand and gravel operations are not exposed to any air particulate that will cause any damage to them.”
“Perhaps their findings would have been more meaningful had they taken time to learn about the construction aggregates industry and not tried to paint all types of mining with the same broad brush,” McGuire stated.
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