Respirator Fit Testing Protocols
Use of properly fitted respirators is an important safety consideration for workers in hazardous environments. Respirator fit testing ensures a tight seal on a user's face for protecting the user from contaminant leakage or harmful pathogens in the environment. The presence of facial hair may also cause respirators to leak. All respirators must be fit tested annually before first use. OSHA recognises two broad categories of fit testing:
- Quantitative Fit Testing Protocols: Allegro quantitative fit testing involves the process of measuring the accurate amount of leakage in tight-fitting facepieces. The equipment comprises a facepiece attached to a probe and connected to the measuring machine via a hose.
- Qualitative Fit Testing Protocols: Allegro qualitative fit testing is a pass or fail method that relies on the personalised sensory (irritation /taste /smell) response of the user (wearing the respirator) to specific test agents like Isoamyl Acetate (Isopentyl Acetate or Banana Oil), sweet (Saccharin), bitter (Denatonium Benzoate) and irritant smoke (HCl and Sn).