Below are the top 10 things you need to know about Respiratory Protection and Fit testing. For more detailed information on training and fit testing visit our website and click on the training icon.
1. OSHA regulation 29 CFR 1910.134 details the requirements for a Respiratory Protection Program.
2. A Respiratory Protection Program is mandatory if any employee is required to wear any type of respirator during the course of their job.
3. Establishing and maintaining a Respiratory Protection Program is the responsibility of the employer and must include: a written program, employee training, fit testing and medical surveillance.
4. All employees who will be issued a respirator must be medically cleared prior to being to fit testing and donning a respirator.
5. Only respirators which have been certified by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) should be used.
6. Fit testing is required to determine the correct size and fit of respirators.
7. Fit testing is required for all positive and negative pressure tight fitting face pieces.
8. Fit testing can be accomplished by using either a qualitative agent (e.g., Bitrex) or quantitative (e.g., PORTACOUNT®).
9. Fit testing must be conducted: prior to initial use of a respirator; if a different make and model of a respirator is assigned; if an employee has any physical changes may affect the fit of their respirator (e.g., weight loss or weight gain); and annually thereafter.
10. Employees must conduct a user seal check each time they don na respirator to assure they have a proper seal.