Shops and confined job sites can pose breathing safety challenges, and now there’s a website available to help managers with programs to protect workers and navigate OSHA requirements.
3M’s Personal Safety Division has launched the “3M Center for Respiratory Protection,” with information on everything from exposure assessments to respirator selection to fit testing—major requirements of written respiratory protection programs.
“When respirators are used in a workplace, OSHA requires companies to establish and maintain a written respiratory protection plan,” says Scott Larson, respiratory protection technical services manager for 3M Personal Safety. “A comprehensive and effective plan isn’t something that can be downloaded from the Internet. An effective program needs to be tailored to the individual needs of the users at each work site.
“Technical service specialists from 3M summarize key points that those responsible for worker health and safety need to know,” Larson says. “The site also provides the tools to help employers as they put a program in place.”
The website outlines eight general steps to help guide managers as they work to create and maintain a respiratory protection program:
- Exposure Assessment
- Respiratory Selection
- Medical Evaluations
- Fit Testing
- Respirator Training
- Respirator Maintenance
- Program Evaluation
The above steps are a summary of requirements and are based on the OSHA requirements; the 3M website provides articles, videos, tool kits, fast facts, and more, all created or gathered by respiratory protection technical service specialists at the company.
Visit the site at www.3m.com/respiratorycenter to read and view all the resources.