Hexavalent chromium (Cr(VI)) is a toxic form of the element chromium. Hexavalent chromium is rarely found in nature and is generally man-made. Cr(VI) is widely used in pigments, metal finishing (electroplating), wood preservatives and fungicides, and in chemical synthesis as an ingredient and catalyst.
Hexavalent chromium may also be present in fumes generated during the production or welding of chrome alloys. Chromium metal is often alloyed with other metals or plated on metal and plastic substrates to improve corrosion resistance and provide protective coatings. The steel industry is a major consumer of chromium metal in the production of stainless steel.
This document is intended to supplement OSHA’s Small Entity Compliance Guide for the Hexavalent Chromium Standards published in 2006 and to give readers an overview of the provisions and requirements of the Hexavalent Chromium standards for general industry, shipyards, and construction.
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