Personal protective equipment (PPE) is another component of the Industrial Hygiene program. Work packages receive a hazard evaluation during the planning process. The Job Hazard Analysis (JHA) Checklist is used to identify hazards associated with the work scope and the control methods to be used, including the use of PPE, to balance those hazards. Tank farm workers receive training for a variety of PPE, including respiratory protection equipment (RPE), based on the individual worker’s job location/scope.
A respirator is a device worn by workers to protect against harmful dust, fumes, vapors or gases. Air-purifying respirators (APRs) use a filter cartridge to clean the air before it enters the respiratory tract.
A Powered Air-Purifying Respirators (PAPR) is a battery-operated article of PPE that is equipped with a fan providing clean breathable air through filters and supply hoses that are connected to the face masks or mouth pieces.
The self-contained breathing apparatus, or SCBA, provides fresh air from a bottle on the worker’s back. Bottles typically have a 30- to 60-minute supply of air. SCBA units provide fresh air through a regulator that is attached to a mask that seals to the user’s face. SCBA is the respiratory protection prescribed for situations that require the most protection.
Whether or not respiratory protection is required, tank farm workers always have the option of upgrading their PPE.
PPE Quick Facts
How are PPE selections made?
- Review and balance anticipated hazard
- Ensure safe in design and construction
- Must have proper fit to each individual employee
- Must be American National Standards Institute (ANSI) approved
- Favorable published product performance
- Based on work area administrative controls (Vapor Reduction Zones and Vapor Control Zones)
Are workers trained on proper use?