The Personal Protective Equipment for Hazardous Workplaces

Respiratory protection is important especially in cases where one is likely to be exposed to substances that might be harmful to the respiratory system or the body organs. In some cases, a person might be in an environment of very low oxygen concentration hence the need to supplement its supply. The type of protective equipment will depend on the nature of the prolusion, the substances involved, magnitude of the contamination and the level of oxygen deficiency. It is therefore very important to determine the level of protection needed. It is important to use the powered or non-powered Air Purifying Respirators (APR) or Supplied Air Respirators (SAR). The powered ones usually have a pack of batteries that suck air through a filter hence providing fresh air to the user. The equipment has an airflow indicator which shows whether there is air flowing through it. In the cases where the oxygen in the given environment is highly polluted or deficient, then one needs to use the Supplied Air Respirator which provides an alternative source of oxygen (Roberts, 1999).

In the fast case where the one needs to be protected from fiberglass dust, then the person will have to use the non-powered Air Purifying Respirators. This is because whatever is required is to sieve out the dust particles from the air so as to prevent them from getting into the respiratory track. The work is being done in the open air hence the oxygen levels are high. In such a case, the P1 filters should be used.

In case two, the workers are in an environment with nitrogen tubing and they suspect a leak in the nitrogen. In such a case, the best equipment to use is the powered Air Purifying Respirator. These would help in supplying the works with enough oxygen hence avoiding any nitrogen contamination. Given that they are moving in and out of the area, they might not need to carry cans of oxygen on their backs. The powered respirators are enough to provide them with enough oxygen. Nitrogen falls under the asphyxiants and it can interfere with the supply of oxygen to the body. This gas has the capability of diluting the oxygen in the air to levels that are dangerous for inhaling. The cartridge to be used should be white in color as it is an acid gas. (Ahmed, 2007).

In the third case where the workers are dealing with hazardous material like hydrochloric acid realizing vapors and other organic solvents, the workers need to use the supplied air respirators. This is because the contamination level is high. The oxygen is full of acidic vapor and organic solvents hence the need to for the workers to use oxygen cylinders. The cartridges ought to be yellow in color (Kosan, 2004)..

In the forth case, the yellow cartridge used indicates that the substances being produced are acidic gases with organic vapors. The acidic gases are likely to cause irritation in the respiratory track while organic compounds are likely to be absorbed through the lungs into the blood stream hence causing damage to the brain and liver. The personnel should therefore use the supplied air respirators with yellow cartridges

It is very important to protect workers in confined places so as to as to prevent them from being intoxicated by inhaling substances that might be harmful to their respiratory system or other body organs. Such protection enables people in such confined environments to carry out their activities without much struggling. The protection usually depends on the level of intoxication in that environment, the substances involved and the levels of oxygen in that area. The sensitivity of the posed organs also matter. Workers in a confined space ought to have personal protective equipment like the air purifying respirators and supplied Air respirators which provide enough oxygen incase the oxygen in that area is polluted or inadequate (Jepsen, 2006).


Ahmed, A. (2007). Guide for the selection of personal protective equipment for. London: Macmillan Publishers.

Jepsen, R. (2006). Safety Wear and Equipment. Harvard: Harvard University Press.

Kosan, L. (2004). Peronal Safety Equipment. New York: Newbury.

Roberts, G. (1999). Personal Protective Equipment. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

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