OSHA is proposing to add two add two quantitative fit-testing protocols to the Respiratory Protection Standard. The public is invited to comment on the accuracy and reliability of the proposed protocols, their effectiveness in detecting respirator leakage, and their usefulness in selecting respirators that will protect employees from airborne contaminants in the workplace.
This proposal would allow employers greater flexibility in choosing fit-testing methods for their employees, and would not require an employer to update or replace current fit-testing methods, as long as the fit-testing method(s) currently in use meet existing standards. The proposal also would not impose additional costs on any private- or public-sector entity.
These protocols would apply to employers in the shipyard, general, and construction industries. If you’re in one of these industries, you may be interested in looking over the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking here. If you’d like to submit your comments, you can do that here. The deadline for submitting comments is Dec. 6, 2016.