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Maker of Fine Sawdust
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Maker of Fine Sawdust
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I just recently heard about granite being radioactive. And now this. It has been kept under wrap by the granite people so sales don't plummet.

The lawyers don't even need a sensitive nose to smell this one.
 

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Maker of Fine Sawdust
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Discussion Starter #5
I assume the standard dose is pretty low.
 

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The Duke
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I just recently heard about granite being radioactive. And now this. It has been kept under wrap by the granite people so sales don't plummet.

The lawyers don't even need a sensitive nose to smell this one.
Everything puts off radiation.

It also appears that this guy is from the solid surface alliance. What a surprise.

The article comes from the San Jose Environmental Health Examiner. Shocking!

People keep trying and failing to put the granite countertop industry out of business.

The place to get the information on this is the Marble Institute of America
 

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Maker of Fine Sawdust
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Everything puts off radiation.

It also appears that this guy is from the solid surface alliance. What a surprise.

The article comes from the San Jose Environmental Health Examiner. Shocking!

People keep trying and failing to put the granite countertop industry out of business.

The place to get the information on this is the Marble Institute of America
Even so, some of the granites are actually hot. If you check them with a Geiger counter they can show substantially above background radiation levels. While others are not it is better to err on the side of caution. The warning should still be adhered to.
 

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The Duke
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Even so, some of the granites are actually hot. If you check them with a Geiger counter they can show substantially above background radiation levels. While others are not it is better to err on the side of caution. The warning should still be adhered to.
While I agree it is best to err on the side of caution, the information about dust from granite fabrication is nothing new. Silicosis will kill you far quicker than the radiation.

If we were going to err on the side of caution, then we should be looking at all countertop materials and the by product of fabrication. If you walk into a Corian shop, you will probably last about 2 minutes before you have to exit and get some fresh air. You will also get the same dust from cutting engineered stone, which is usually epoxy and quartz crystals. And don't forget about the chemicals used to manufacture laminate tops.

Standard precautions are advisable in anything you do. If it's fine dust, no matter what, you are inhaling it into your lungs.

This is blowing things out of proportion, just like the radon scare last year. And from the author and poster to your link, I'd say it's another attempt at fear mongering by the competition. And people will buy into it.

The competition doesn't have too many legs left to stand on. This may just be the final nail in the coffin for them.

The MIA video they released last year about the radon. The fear was driven by the competition. All it did was educate the consumer even more about the advantages of granite.

 

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Maker of Fine Sawdust
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You can put a dust mask on and be reasonably protected from the dust hazards but the radioactive particles will pass through that and don't even need to. Having a constant exposure to it in your field will cause problems decades down the line. We work in a hazardous business. Eventually something will kill you.
 

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The Duke
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You can put a dust mask on and be reasonably protected from the dust hazards but the radioactive particles will pass through that and don't even need to. Having a constant exposure to it in your field will cause problems decades down the line. We work in a hazardous business. Eventually something will kill you.
I agree. Your animated avatar would also be a slow, painful death. :laughing:
 

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Project Manager HFH..
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It doesn't really matter.We are all going to die from the Bird Flu anyway.:rolleyes:
 

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Framerman,

Exactly who do you think will put out the facts if the competition doesn't? I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for the MIA to tell the truth on these matters. And not everything puts off radiation at detectable levels much less the levels that are of concern here.

And there is a grand conspiracy to put the granite industry down? Uh, the products can be highly radioactive, even some of the very low radiation stones have been found to "spew" radon according to Dr. Steck at St. Johns University. There are massive amounts of heavy metals in many of the popular colors. We got an email today from one case we have been following. People got some granite installed, family started getting sick, they tested the baby's hair a couple of weeks ago and found unusually high uranium levels, and unexpected levels of aluminum and arsenic. Are we supposed to bury our heads in the sand and continue to allow these materials to be sold to unsuspecting customers? Do granite shops have a superior right to make a buck that over rides a families health?

And what kind of intelligence recomends going to the Marble Institute for information on these issues? Do ya think they might tell the truth????

"
Silicosis will kill you far quicker than the radiation."

Okay, now I don't get this. Why would you make that statement without being qualified to back it up? There have been silica studies going back into the last century, but no one ever thought to consider how much of the damage was caused by the radiation compared to the silica grinding the lung tissue. I would challenge you to find and post one study that backs up your claim.
On other countertop materiasl, yes, all should be checked. We got quartz material added to last year's California wet cutting law, where all stone, brick, cement have to be cut wet. Turns out the quartz product produced far more silica than granite, but the state regulators had missed the quartz product. Solid surface dust was cleared by OSHA several years back, it was classified as a nuscience dust similar to wood dust. But the solid surface dust is composed of arcylic and ATH, a hydrate of aluminum (has a couple of water molecules attached). The stuff is so inert that they use it in dental work. Comparing solid surface dust to granite dust is senseless, no radon, no radiation, no heavy metals, no silica.

Next you claim the CRCPD is blowing things out of porportion. Who are you to judge nuclear health matters? How can you claim to know more than the experts and how can you know what information they have that you are ignorant of? And how is it the "final nail in the coffin" for competing products when granite dust is found to be highly radioactive? That makes absolutely no sense whatsoever!

And the MIA is right about the radon from granite? Well, that is news to the science world! The next AARST/CRCPD convention (radon scientists and the state radiation officials organizations) has six papers and panel discussions being presented on Tuesday alone! Only the MIA continues to claim that radon doesn't come from granite. At the last Health Physics Society convention there were two papers presented and one presentation (the granite dust study) on the hazards of granite countertops.

Geez dude, you own stock in a granite company or something?
 

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Leo G has it right, it will take a half face respirator, properly fitted and tested with trained workers, with a HEPA prefilter to catch the particles. A regular OSHA approved comformt mask isn't likely to be enough, but might do after testing proves the point. You have to have a respirator program, send the workers to a doctor for a check up so they don't keel over with a heart attack (wear one for a half day and you will understand).
 

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Here we go again....

OK, so here is a brief summary of this issue, Actually there are 4 issues.

1) Silicosis. Yes, this is a very serious potential condition. "Black lung" disease is no joke and granite dust has some of the same potential issues with black lung disease. This is why EVERY reputable granite fabrication company that I know of uses water in every step of the way. It would possibly be OK to use respirators, etc., but the truth is that the workers short cut these safety devices too often. Just use water and keep your shop clean. Issue resolved (at least according to an OSHA audit we went thru).

2) Radiactivity. This is the most over blown thing that has been claimed in the granite industry. There are a couple of quarries in South Africa somewhere that put out a granite that has tested high in radiation. I know of NO ONE who imports or sells this material. It is 2 or 3 colors from a specific area in the world. I will stick with the 1000 other colors. Why would we take the chance? How could this risk possibly pay off? The vast majority of other colors have been tested over and over with no issues at all.

3) RADON. Yes, some granites release radon. So does the ground around you, so does concrete, it actually is pretty common. In our area, we have a hill that has a high level of radon. That radon comes from the ground. Know what the answer is? Use good ventialiton in your basement because radon tends to be a higher percentage in the lower sections of a house.

4) Public perception. This is where the arguments and shouting begins. There are a variety of 'experts' who shout from the rooftop that there viewpoint is correct. The ones who have shouted loudest about these issues (Al is an example) have by and large been proven inaccurate. I am sure that this will generate a response from him, but it is true. On the other side, while the MIA tries to be impartial, they do have a vested interest in the results. Where is the truth? Personally, I think it is a lot closer to the MIA information than the solid surface industry.

Here is my bottom line: If I thought for one instant that the potential for harm or wrong was possible, I would not even be close to this industry. But there really is no evidence of this.

Having said all of this, there is a lot of discussion and even some research on this topic if you want to do some searching. Unfortunately, I didn't have the time to look it up and I am going on vacation for a week, so will not have time to respond to the attacks I would bet will be coming my way....have a great week....

dale
 

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I guess Dale S. doesn't want this to harm his pocketbook. Let's look at how his reason is lacking.

1) EVERY granite fabricator will have some dry operations such as rodding, field work, and wet cutting doesn't eliminate all the dust, depends on the operation being done. Even then there are many instances of 100% wet shops failing their silica tests, usually caused by poor housekeeping. Last Friday I took a visiting scientist to look at some shops, including one well equipped wet shop that had dust all over the floor, nearby countertops, workbenches, everywhere. As soon as the floor dries out, the dust is airborne anyway. Keeping the shop clean means constantly cleaning so none of the dust can ever get airborne. That costs money, Dale would rather depend on his Workers Comp to shield him from claims, yet he doesn't understand that once this issue is known, he is required to do due dilligence to protect his workers or the Comp won't prevent him from being sued by an exposed worker.

2) Absolutely wrong. Every almost every stone producing continent has granite coming in over the safe limits, Asia, Africa, South America, even Austrailia has stone that would be a problem were it popular here in the U.S.. As for the African stone that Dale claims NO ONE sells, it is imported by G & L Marble out of Atlanta, distributed by Bedrock International, Midwest Tile and Marble, AG&M, and just about every other wholesaler out there. Bordeaux is one of the worst, a Brazilian stone, with the majority of the slabs being over safe limits. There are some low level slabs, but they are not that common.

The problem is bad enough that the European Union has regulations on granite countertop materials (20 uR/hr max, about three times Oklahoma background radiation levels) and even China has regulations requiring third party testing and consumer labeling of all granite products, along with maximum levels of radiation for different building types.

There are about 20 stones with major radiation problems, and some are popular colors. Dale asks "Why would we take the chance?" Because of the huge profit margin, a block can be turned into slabs for around $4.00 per square foot down in Brazil, even less for some types of stone, then sold wholesale here in the U.S. for $9.00 to $30.00 per square foot. Chinese stone can be landed here in the U.S. preworked into vanities or kithchen tops for less than $3.00 per square foot. Bordeaux is an excellent example of a problem stone, a 55 square foot slabs costs $220.00 to produce and load on a container, then wholesales at $20.00 per foot miniumum, or $1,100.00, an $880.00 gross profit. Now figure a bundle of ten slabs, $8,8000 gross profit per bundle.
Then Dale takes that $20.00 per foot material and resells it for $70.00 per square foot, grossing $2,000.00 to $3,000.00 per slab. Sell a two slab job which takes maybe 60 man hours to produce (@ $30.00 per hour shop rate, $1,800.00 ) and you have a net profit of $2,200.00 to $3,800.00 for that 2 slab job.

That is why he "takes the chance." And the risk was paying off really well till the truth started coming out.

As to the vast majority of colors being tested, if we have learned one thing over the last year is that there are no bad colors, just bad slabs. ALL slabs must be tested prior to sale. Even ordinary stones like Baltic Brown or Sant Cecilia have been known to have the occasional hot slab.

3) Yes, the ground gives off radon as well as some concrete. In minute amounts in most cases and not many people have dirt floors in their home. Notice that Dale completely sidestepped the issue, bringing up granite radon, then discussing soil radon. At the Health Physics Society convention, Dr. Steck reported that after surveying over 400 slabs of granite, he finds that 10% will need radon testing prior to purchase, and that 5% of all granite types will be of concern in a small home or an energy efficient home. Yes, enough ventilation will limit the build up of radon in a home, but do you really want to put in a granite countertop that requires you to exhaust one third of the home's air every hour? Maybe in California, but how about in Houston Texas, New York, or Florida? What is that going to cost you each year in heating and air conditioning costs?

And do you realize that while using a granite top, you get a snoot ful of concentrated radon before it dissapates into the room?

4) First off, "there" referres to a place, "their" denotes possession. Next instead of discussing the issues, you resort to a personal attack, immediately proving you lack any other method of winning the debate. If I have been "proven innaccurate" why did the CRCPD send out that nation wide warning? As one of the three researchers listed in the paper as well as one of the three researchers listed as authors of the HPS convention presentation, I'd say I have been proven right all along. Then there is that pesky AARST/CRCPD convention coming up in September with six (6, count em) papers or presentations on granite countertop risks to the general public. The panel discussion on Tuesday? Three PhD's, one Industrial Hygienist, one Health Physcist, and "proven innaccurate" Al. What you don't know is that I was the guy that was asked by AARSt to set up the discussion, I recruited the experts from my email list (except for the HP), I wrote the abstract, submitted it, then a demand was made by AARSt to get one of the MIA's scientists there to answer questions cause they got some "splaining" to do.

And the MIA is impartial? Are ya friggin nuts? Are we talking about the organization that paid Professor Langmuir to claim only one atomic decay per year per countertop? Are we talking about the same organization that has been stomping down this discussion since 1995, the same organization that put a picture of a baby playing with granite blocks on their radon brocure last year? The one that hired Cohne & Wolfe, one of the largest big tobacco PR firms to attempt to limit the public relations damage? I would guess Cohne & Wolfe would know the arguements on low level radiation and cancer, but was it a wise choice to be associated?

And your second to last paragraph was close to correct, it is your bottom line that drives your thinking. Despite seeing the CRCPD, AARST, Health Physics Society, and the EPA changing sides on the issues, you still don't think there is any evidence? The EPA realized the truth of the issues last year, three days after they sided with the MIA they rescinded their statement, then set up a six page website covering the issues. At that point our science wasn't complete, it is now, and that is what caused the government agencies to become concerned.

And you attack me personally, then pre label any response as an "attack"? Then again, personal attacks is all you got my friend cause the facts are completely against your position.

Enjoy your profits Dale. One commenter on a blog put it best, "There will be a special place in Hell for those that willing sell a radioactive countertop to a family".
 

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WOW! I expected an attack, but I am surprised by this level!

Al,
I will not respond to your posting on a point by point basis. This issue has been discussed in great depth on other forums and I will leave it at that. If anyone is interested, a lot of information is available for further research.

I wish you and yours the best,
dale

By the way, I have always had trouble with "their" and there", but thank you for pointing this out in a public forum. It really made my day.
 

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No, Dale, you don't replypoint by point because you have no rebutal. You wish to cast aspersions without offering proof.

And the MIA video is convincing??? Want me to take it apart for ya?

Have you guys ever considered whether or not you have educated yourselves on the facts? At the very least you ought to do so in able to mitigate future problems.
 

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Want to play a game?
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Considering each one of us do one of the most dangerous things we could ever do statistically every single day I don't think I am going to waste my time pounding my chest about how much info I know about granite dust.
What is the most dangerous thing we do you ask? We all hop in a work vehicle of some sort everyday to get a job done. When deaths caused by car crashes in America drop below deaths caused by radiation in granite you can tell me I told you so.:rolleyes:
 
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