Engineered stone is a manufactured product made of crushed quartz or marble that is used for countertops and floors. Quartz mainly for countertops, marble for floors. The quartz or marble is glued and colored.
The high silica content of engineered stone made with quartz makes the produce hazardous to those who manufacture or work with it. Silicosis may rapidly develop as fine silica particles lodge in the lungs of unprotected workers. The product is not hazardous to end users so long as they do not cut or polish it. Fabricating granite countertops, or headstones, for that matter, pose a similar risk, but dust from those operations contains only about 60% silica.
A number of cheaper and safer alternatives are available. Zodiaq, Caesarstone, DEKTON, and Silestone are brandnames for engineered stone. Most of the semi-precious stones used to manufacture Prexury are forms of quartz.
References and notes
- "Hazard Alert Worker Exposure to Silica during Countertop Manufacturing, Finishing and Installation". OSHA. https://www.osha.gov/Publications/OSHA3768.pdf. Retrieved April 2, 2016.
- Barry Meier (April 1, 2016). "Popular Quartz Countertops Pose a Risk to Workers". The New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/02/business/popular-quartz-countertops-pose-a-risk-to-workers.html. Retrieved April 2, 2016.