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Respirator Mask Fit Testing

Quantitative Respirator Mask Fit Testing

Quantitative mask fit testing acts as a highly accurate method to gauge the efficiency of a respirator mask’s seal, offering precise measurements crucial for optimal protection. We offer testing for half-masks, full-facepieces, CBRN/Gas masks, powered air-purifying respirators (PAPRs), and self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBAs). All tests are completed with our AccuFIT9000™ which conforms to CSA Z94.4 testing standards.

The Process of Quantitative Fit Testing

During a quantitative fit test, the individual wears the mask and connects to a measuring device that assesses particle concentration both inside and outside the mask. While engaging in a series of exercises, such as deep breathing or head movements, the machine calculates the leakage rate. This data is then utilized to determine the fit factor, offering a measurable evaluation of the mask’s effectiveness in preventing the entry of airborne particles.

Industries Requiring Quantitative Mask Fit Testing

Various industries, from healthcare to construction and manufacturing, prioritize the safety of their workers’ respiratory health. Quantitative fit testing is a crucial method used to make sure that masks effectively protect against airborne particles. According to the Alberta Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) legislation, “If respiratory protective equipment is used, employers are required to provide the appropriate equipment, maintain and store it properly, and ensure that it is properly fitted to the individual worker. Where the efficiency of respiratory protective equipment depends on a facial seal, the employer must ensure that the wearer is clean shaven where the respirator seals to the skin of the wearer’s face” (“Respiratory Protective Equipment: An Employer’s Guide,” 2020, p. 2).

Frequency and Maintenance

According to OHS guidelines in Alberta, fit testing must be completed:

  • When the respirator is first issued
  • At least every two years if there is no change in the wearer or respirator itself
  • If there’s a change in the make, design, brand, or size of the respirator you’re using
  • If there is a change to the wearer’s weight, face shape, or dental work that could affect respirator fit

(2020, March). Respiratory Protective Equipment: An Employer’s Guide. OHS Resource Portal.

To learn more on how Commodore Solutions can help you design and implement your occupational health and safety programs, please contact us.

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