Face Fit Testing

Face Fit Testing

Face fit testing is carried out to ensure that Respiratory Protective Equipment (RPE) such as respirators and face masks provide a good seal to prevent individuals breathing in contaminants in the air. RPE includes full-face and half-face masks.

Face Fit test should be carried out when initially selecting RPE for a person. It should be repeated if the type of RPE changes, a person gains or loses significant weight, has major dental work or has changes to facial characteristics which could change the shape and structure of the face, and therefore the fit and seal of the RPE.

The Face Fit Test takes around 30 minutes to complete. You will be asked to bring with you the mask that you intend to wear, and any other PPE that you may wear (such as face shields, hearing protection, safety glasses).

The individual will wear their RPE and will be asked to wear a hood over this. A bitter solution spray will be added to the hood and a series of movements and breathing techniques will be performed by the individual. Detecting the taste of the bitter solution during the test process indicates that the face mask seal is not effective and therefore not protecting the worker.

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