Date: Tue, 24 Feb 2009 15:51:19 -0500
Reply-To: List Moderator <ecgrants**At_Symbol_Here**UVM.EDU>
Sender: DCHAS-L Discussion List <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU>
From: List Moderator <ecgrants**At_Symbol_Here**UVM.EDU>
Subject: 3 RE: [DCHAS-L] dust masks

 >Can anyone tell me for sure if HEPA dust masks respirators (the kind  

that resembles a regular dust mask/doctors mask) require a full  
respiratory program, ie. medical evaluation and fit testing?

From: "Harrington, Rachel" 
Date: February 24, 2009 3:11:39 PM EST
Subject: RE: [DCHAS-L] dust masks

If the mask has a NIOSH number on it then it is a respirator and  
requires a program.  For situations where you can prove that the  
respirator is not needed (you will need air monitoring data for this)  

and folks are wearing them for peace of mind (for lack of a better  
explanation) then you can implement the voluntary program allowed  
under the standard which reduces employer obligations considerably.

Date: February 24, 2009 3:14:22 PM EST
Subject: RE: dust masks

Depends on if it is voluntary use or non-voluntary (required, spelled  

out in an SOP, etc.)  Voluntary use does not - where non-voluntary use 
would put you into the program.  I have attached an excerpt from the  
OSHA standard interpretation and provided a link below:

Non-voluntary use of a filtering facepiece (dust mask/disposable paper  

type dust respirator) requires that the employer establish and  
implement a written respiratory protection program with worksite- 
specific procedures. The respiratory protection program must include  
the medical evaluation of employees.  (Note: This would include fit  


Best Regards,
Brian M. Spears, CIH, CSP, CHMM
Associate Industrial Hygiene Specialist
Safe Work IS Our Job
Dow Corning Corporation
4770 Highway 42 East
Carrollton, KY 41008
office:  (502) 732-2726
mobile:  (502) 682-8593


From: Kent Candee 
Date: February 24, 2009 3:43:35 PM EST
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] dust masks


The question to ask, are they being used voluntary or because of  
exposure limit exceedance or business entity is requiring their use.   

The latter two would require medical evaluation and fit testing along  

with all other respiratory protection program requirements.  A good  
document to use to answer such a question is OSHA's Compliance  
Instruction document, CPL 02-00-120, Inspection procedures for the  
Respiratory Protection Standard dated 09/25/1998.

If you need more information, you can email me directly.

Kent A.
Kent A. Candee, CIH
Assistant Secretary
Environmental Health Services Manager
Home Office Risk Improvement
EMC Insurance Companies
Ph: 515-345-2728
Cell: 515-321-5874
Fax: 515-345-2220

Count on EMC for Loss Control Services

Previous post   |  Top of Page   |   Next post

The content of this page reflects the personal opinion(s) of the author(s) only, not the American Chemical Society, ILPI, Safety Emporium, or any other party. Use of any information on this page is at the reader's own risk. Unauthorized reproduction of these materials is prohibited. Send questions/comments about the archive to
The maintenance and hosting of the DCHAS-L archive is provided through the generous support of Safety Emporium.