New rule updates respirator certification requirements
Washington – NIOSH on March 8 published a final rule that updates its testing and certification requirements for closed-circuit escape respirators.
The respirators, known in the mining industry as self-contained self-rescuers, provide breathable air to protect wearers from toxic fumes and gases or insufficient oxygen. Among the new requirements:
- Improved measures to ensure respirators are rugged enough to perform in harsh environments
- A new capacity-rating system based on volume of usable oxygen instead of duration of time oxygen is provided
- Upgraded testing standards to verify quality and quantity of breathing gas
The rule, which will be included in the new Subpart O of 42 CFR Part 84, is scheduled to go into effect April 9.