Silicosis is a disease brought on through inhaling crystalline silica dust. It causes irreversible damage to the lungs and often leads to premature death. Tanzanite mining is prone to it because of the geology of the region and the largely underground, enclosed mining practices, which occur without sufficient ventilation. Providing miners with proper masks and filters can prevent inhalation of silica dust.
Currently, silicosis is spreading unhindered by proper screening or treatment due to a lack of knowledge and awareness. Each miner receiving a mask will receive training on silicosis and why the mask is essential to their protection.