When to use a mask for protection against fine particles?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWorkers in many industrial sectors are exposed to fine particles which can be inhaled and particularly those who work on construction sites.

Fine particles are produced in high concentrations during demolition of concrete or masonry structures, when carrying out blasting work, preparing cement mortar or concrete as well as during hammering or drilling operations where the particle concentration is even higher. The type of particle produced is mainly silica dust but artificial fibres such as rock fibre or fibreglass are also present particularly during insulation activities. These dusts are classified as PM10 and are sized 10 microns. They can be inhaled, accumulate in the lungs and damage the respiratory system. In some cases these particles can be still finer and even more harmful.

Workers who inhale such fine dusts are, over time, exposed to the risk of respiratory diseases such as silicosis, acute lung problems and bronchial asthma.
Preventive measures such as moistening rubble with water to reduce dust, not consuming meals in the vicinity of construction sites etc. should be applied.

But, overall, Respiratory Protective Devices must be worn

Respiratory Protective Devices are also known as RPD or RPE. For construction or building work the following two types of filtering devices are  used:

  • disposable particle face masks against non toxic dusts;
  • powered or non powered respirators equipped with half masks, full face masks or helmets fitted with particle filters to filter air containing dangerous particles such as silica dust.

 RPD must be checked before use:  the use of Respiratory Protective Devices is personal and workers need to be trained as to their use. Only CE certified RPD bearing the CE mark may be used in Europe.

The devices currently on the market are designed and manufactured to CE standards and regulations. They are ergonomic, equipped with inhalation and exhalation valves which allow for easier breathing while ensuring optimum levels of protection.

Kasco srl manufactures different types of PPE for respiratory protection which include the VENUS1 T8 powered air purifying respirator completo di maschera intera, con gruppo ventilatore motorizzato che fornisce aria ambiente filtrata direttamente al facciale per mezzo di un tubo di respirazione.