The government has produced a series of short videos to provide training and information on the proper use of respirators. OSHA officials say watching the videos could potentially prevent hundreds of deaths and thousands of illnesses annually.
Insufficient oxygen environments, harmful dusts, fogs, smokes, mists, gasses, vapors, and sprays are among the exposures faced by workers in more than 1.3 million workplaces in the U.S. The exposures can result in cancer, lung impairment, and other diseases, some of which cause death.
The most effective methods of controlling exposure to hazardous airborne substances are engineering and work practice controls. Respiratory equipment is designed to prevent or lessen the severity of injuries to workers when engineering and administrative controls are not feasible or effective in reducing the exposures to acceptable levels.
The 17 videos -- nine in English and eight in Spanish -- contain information for workers exposed to poor air quality in general industry and construction. Topics included are:
- Respirator types.
- Respirator fit testing.
- Training requirements.
- Counterfeit and altered respirators.
- Medical evaluations for workers who use respirators.
They may be downloaded or streamed.
In addition, OSHA has a Web page on respirator protection that includes training materials, information about occupational respiratory hazards in different industries, and details of the agency's Respiratory Protection Standard.
Read more at the WorkersComp Forum homepage.
February 27, 2012
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