NPPTL Sets June 26 Meeting on Respirator Certification Change

NIOSH's National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory has scheduled a June 26 meeting at a Pittsburgh International Airport hotel to share with stakeholders its plan to develop Total Inward Leakage (TIL) as part of its respirator certification process, mainly for half-mask air-purifying particulate filter respirators. But the lab's May 29 letter says it plans to include similar TIL requirements for other respirator classes eventually.

The meeting at the Embassy Suites hotel is scheduled to last from 9 a.m. to mid-afternoon; registration starts at 8 a.m. The proposed TIL performance requirements are not the same as current Assigned Protection Factor values; NPPTL's letter said the requirements are expected to be based on state-of-the-art respirator performance "and will account for differences between laboratory test conditions and workplace conditions." The proposed TIL test will use a panel of 35 test subjects from a NIOSH-updated Los Alamos panel in sizes specified by the respirator manufacturer. "Recent trends in the field of personal protective equipment (PPE) testing have focused on the need to effectively evaluate PPE systems performance for TIL under laboratory conditions. While total inward leakage testing performed under laboratory conditions does not necessarily reflect expected actual field level PPE performance, it does represent a criterion for performance that influences PPE design. Although TIL testing is intended to quantify the ability of respirators to fit a range of individuals, it is not intended to replace individual fit testing as mandated by OSHA," the letter states.

To attend, make hotel reservations directly with the hotel before the cut-off date of June 10 by calling 412-269-9070 and asking for Lauren. The lab asks attendees to confirm their attendance by completing a registration form and submitting it to NPPTL Event Management via http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/www.cdc.gov/niosh/npptl/resources/certpgmspt/meetings/062607/default.html. For more information, contact the NIOSH-NPPTL Policy and Standards Development branch at 412-386-5200.

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