The Wyoming Occupational Safety and Health Administration is proposing a rule that would require workers to wear flame-resistant clothing within 75 feet of an oil and gas well bore. The agency is taking public comments on the proposal and will hold a public hearing on Oct. 5 in Casper.John Robitaille, of the Petroleum Association of Wyoming, says industry would welcome the rule since many already follow it now. But Robitaille says some companies would rather use the special clothing on an as-needed basis.
A study by the National Institute of Occupational Safety found that workers involved with hydraulic fracturing are often exposed to dangerously high levels of silica.
Silica sand is used in fracking fluid, and breathing dust from the material can cause lung diseases and cancer.
The sites that were monitored for the study were all outside Wyoming, but John Robitaille with the Petroleum Association of Wyoming says companies here still need to take the matter seriously.