The purpose of a Respiratory Protective Equipment (R.P.E.) standard is to assure that a minimum level of performance is reached by the respirator. Standards from a number of countries and standards organizations require that certain specifications are met in construction and that respirators be evaluated by specific performance tests. This is the second of three critical review papers related to respirator standards. We here summarize in tabular form, compare and critically review how the different countries or standards organizations test respirators designed for protection against gases and vapors for leakage due to improper fitting of the respirator facepiece and gas and vapor removal efficiency of the cartridge/canister. Two general aspects as they relate to removal capacity testing are discussed. The first issue deals with the selection of test gases and vapors that best represent the sorptive behavior of a class or group of compounds. The second issue deals with the extrapolation of laboratory testing under rigidly specified conditions to conditions of actual use. Fit testing varies from country to country. The fit testing conditions specified in the various standards are summarized along with a discussion of test material selection, the test panel selection, and the range of controlled test activities.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health