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Trade News Release
Jan. 21, 2009
Contact: Office of Communications
Phone: 202-693-4676


OSHA publishes proposed rulemaking to establish revised procedures for fit testing respirators

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has proposed revised fit tests for determining the effectiveness of respiratory protection facemasks.

The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) was published today in the Federal Register. The rule proposes two revised fit test procedures under OSHA's Respiratory Protection Standard.

In 1998, OSHA issued the revised OSHA Respiratory Protection Standard, 29 CFR 1910.134, which incorporated two categories of respirator fit tests. Some tests expose wearers to airborne agents to determine if they can detect them and other tests use a machine to measure how much of a test agent leaks into a respirator. The proposed revisions would allow certain machine-based fit tests to be conducted more quickly and increase the required score for passing them.

The Agency encourages the public to comment on the proposed rule. Go to http://www.regulations.gov and reference Docket No. OSHA-2007-0007. Comments may also be submitted by fax at (202) 693-1648 or by mail to the OSHA Docket Office, Technical Data Center, Room N-2625, OSHA, Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20210.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing a safe and healthy workplace for their employees. OSHA's role is to promote the safety and health of America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach, and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual process improvement in workplace safety and health. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.


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U.S. Labor Department releases are accessible on the Internet at www.dol.gov. The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format upon request (large print, Braille, audiotape or disc) from the COAST office. Please specify which news release when placing your request at (202) 693-7828 or TTY (202) 693-7755. The U.S. Department of Labor is committed to providing America's employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations. For more information, please visit www.dol.gov/compliance.
OSHA News Release - Table of Contents

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