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NIOSH/NPPTL Respirator User Notice

The IAFF Division of Occupational Health, Safety and Medicine has been notified by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health's (NIOSH) National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory (NPPTL) about an issue that has occurred in respirator Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) approvals issued between July 2012 and October 2013. During this time period, respirators tested by the Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center’s (ECBC) Test Laboratory were subjected to significantly lower concentrations of Chemical Warfare Agent (CWA) than what is required by NIOSH test procedures and NFPA 1981, 2013 edition.

The particular tests in question relate only to the ability of the respirator to protect against CWAs. All NIOSH-conducted tests and evaluations that don’t involve CBRN protections have not been compromised by the errors discovered in the CWA testing. Therefore, these respirators are verified to perform as approved for all applications other than CBRN protection.

The ECBC has temporarily halted operations to validate all test procedures before resuming operations in January 2014. Retesting of all respirators affected is scheduled to be completed by April 1, 2014 at which time new approvals will commence.

See the following link for the NIOSH/NPPTL Respirator User Notice http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/npptl/usernotices/notices/notice11272013.html


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