Respiratory Protection, Respirator Face Masks and Disposable Face Masks:
It is estimated that nearly 5 million people throughout the United States are mandated to wear respiratory protection in workplaces with hazardous breathing conditions. Respiratory protection acts as a barrier between the worker and harmful debris, poisons and gases in the air as well as protecting against insufficient oxygen intake. Inhalation of hazardous chemicals, debris and gases can cause lung damage, respiratory diseases, cancer, asbestosis and even death. Breathing in some chemicals can lead to permanent brain damage. In many workplaces there is no getting around dealing with harmful toxins in the air making personal respiratory protection a necessity.
Prevention against hazardous inhalation is the only defense short of changing occupation. Protective respiratory protection is available in several different types of facemask protections and systems. The concentration of the inhalant hazard will determine which respiratory protective gear is best suited for task.
Types of Respiratory Facemasks:
Gas Masks: Gas masks protect wearer from harmful vapors, chemicals, dust, and biological pathogens. Gas mask have limited period of use and cannot be used in oxygen deficient areas. They come as a full-face piece with attached removable canister. The canister selected for use is based on particular toxic inhalant is in the air. Hand held escape mask commonly used for short exposure to toxins are also a form of gasmasks.
Chemical Cartridge Facemasks: Similar to the gas mask, the chemical cartridge facemask is used for lower toxicity gases and vapors. Again, like the gas mask, the cartridge is removable for exchange of appropriate cartridge for specific exposure. The chemical cartridge facemask is not appropriate in conditions of low oxygen, high levels of airborne toxics, with eye irritant toxins, and unknown toxins.
Pesticide Facemasks: Used commonly by industrial farmers, green houses and pesticide plant workers. Pesticide respirators/facemasks are a one-piece facemask tat puts a barrier between the wearer and harmful pesticide vapors.
Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus: Commonly worn by rescue workers such as fire fighters, the self-contained breathing apparatus are worn in conjunction with protective outerwear clothing and air supply is carried with worker. The self-contained respiratory protection requires intensive training.
Dust, Fume and Mist Particulate Respirators: This style facemask is similar to that of the disposable facemask in that they provide no protection from harmful gases or vapors or oxygen deficient areas. They come in either a quarter or half facemask with a mechanical filter unit. Filters must be replaced regularly. There are three classes of filtrationsí in dust, fume and mist particulate respirators, 1, 2, and 3 with Class 3 providing the most protection
Disposable Dust Facemasks / Disposable Respirators: Disposable facemasks are widely in all lifestyles, from workers to personal use while doing task around the home. Generally made of a paper material, disposable facemask are only good for non-toxic airborne contact. The use of personal disposable facemask can lower transference of illness in a workplace as well as lessen the inhaling of dust particles
Wearing the proper respiratory protection can make the difference between a healthy safe worker and unnecessary toxic exposure resulting in loss work up to possible death. Any employee required to wear any form of respiratory protection should be taught thoroughly in how to wear and maintain this vital piece of safety equipment.
For quick answers to your questions regarding all of your Respiratory Protection needs, fill out our contact form or call New York Safety Equipment today at 631-563-1677 or 516-458-3563 for additional information.