Safety – Respiratory Protective devices

Respiratory Protective devices have molded flexible face pieces with transparent windows which vary in size and shape. Eye protection is imperative due to the irritating nature of moist chorine gas or liquid chlorine splashes. Provision for exhaust air is accomplished by various types of valve devices which remain tightly closed during the intake cycle of breathing. Connections between the face piece and other parts of the apparatus require a flexible tube which permits free head movement. This tubing shall be visually inspected and tested for performance at frequent intervals. If leaks in the face piece, tube or tube connections cannot be eliminated by tightening the head straps, the complete face piece and attached flexible tube shall be replaced.

Self contained breathing Apparatus:

It is equipped with a cylinder of air or oxygen carried on the body or with a canister which produces oxygen chemically and is suitable for high concentrations of chlorine in an oxygen deficient atmosphere and is the preferred means of, respiratory protection. Such apparatus can be operated only for a specified length of time.

Industrial Canister Type Masks:

It is equipped with chlorine or all purpose canister and is suitable for moderate concentrations of chlorine provided sufficient oxygen is present. The mask should be used for a relatively short exposure period only. It may not be suitable for use in an emergency. For example, the rupture of a chlorine container coincident with oxygen consuming fire would clearly indicate the use of a self contained or supplied air protective device, since at that time, the actual chorine concentration may exceed the safe 1 percent limit and the oxygen content may be less than 16 per cent volume. Under this condition suffocation is likely to result.

The canister removes contaminants during inhalation but does not supply oxygen. The wearer must leave the contaminated area immediately on detecting the odor of chlorine or on experiencing dizziness or difficulty in breathing; these are indications that mask is not functioning properly, or that the chlorine concentration is too high, or that sufficient oxygen is not available.

Unless the presence of other gases require the use of an all purpose canister the chlorine canister should be used. The service life of a canister depends on the size of he unit, the chlorine concentration and humidity of the atmosphere to which it is exposed, and the rate of breathing. It usually varies from 15 minutes or less at high concentration up to several hours at very low concentrations. Canisters installed in the mask proper with seals broken to render the unit immediately available, do not retain their chlorine absorptive capacity and shall be replaced immediately after use or within 1 year in any case.

Spare canisters should be stored in a cool dry, accessible place with seat intact and dated so that rotation of new supplies is possible.

Exceeding manufacturers recommended limits on maximum non-use shelf life might be hazardous. Regular replacement of over age canisters, even though unused, is recommended. Canisters should be periodically checked for their efficiency.

Positive Pressure (Blower) Hose Make:

It is equipped with air supplied through a hose from a remote blower and is suitable for high concentrations of chlorine provided conditions will permit safe escape if the air supply fails. The device is suitable in any atmosphere, regardless of the degree of contamination of oxygen deficiency, provided than clean breathable air can be reached. This device is of the continuous flow type.

Demand Type Hose Mask:

It supplies air to the face piece (at a rate governed by breathing) of the user only when he inhales. Air supply for this device may be full sized compressed air cylinders or a compressor. As for continuous flow type units, the air supply must be suitable for respiration.

Combination units are available which consists of a self contained demand air unit with a reinforced high pressure hose trough which air is supplied to the demand regulator from remote air cylinders or a compressor. In the event that the escape is not possible through the path of energy, the air hose may be disconnected and escape made using air supplied by the demand air unit on the users back.

The information given above should be abstracted and put into a form which is not only suitable for instant use in the event of emergency, but which may also be used as the basis for first aid drill. Regular rehearsals, which include the entire testing procedures and wearing of the equipment, will help to save the life of an employee faced with an emergency

Prevention from long term Effects:

The danger from long term effects may be minimized by maintaining careful medical supervision of those exposed to the hazard removing from contact anyone who shows early symptoms of being affected, and by excluding anyone who may be expected to show undue sensitivity by reason of existing bodily defect or diseases.

Containers, piping and equipment should be checked for leaks daily. If a leak is detected it should be reported and immediate steps taken to correct the conditions.