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Real-time measurements, real world safety

05 October 2022

DO YOU have workers who wear tight fitting respirators such as disposable, half mask or full-face masks? In the UK, all businesses that have workers wearing respirators are required by HSE INDG 479 to perform respirator fit testing and confirm those respirators will provide the right level of on-the-job protection needed.

What is respirator fit testing?

The amount of protection a respirator provides is heavily dependent on how well it fits. Respirator fit testing evaluates the seal between a respirator and the face, identifying gaps or leaks that put workers at risk. Fit testing also verifies that staff are trained to don and adjust respirators to achieve a proper fit and that respirators are comfortable to wear. In the end a fit test confirms that workers and staff achieve the required level of protection for the respirator type they issued. HSE requires that a fit test be completed at least annually for anyone required to wear a tight-fitting respirator for his or her job. 

Quantitative fit testing gives users a numeric measurement of the respirator fit. The results allow safety professionals to make the best-informed decisions to protect their teams. The PortaCount Respirator Fit Tester takes real-time measurements of the particle concentrations both within and outside of the respirator. Those two measurements create a ratio called the fit factor. Measurements are taken continuously throughout the test and a fit factor is calculated for each exercise and at the completion of the test, resulting in a passed or failed fit test.

Any respirator, one fit tester

The TSI PortaCount Respirator Fit Tester can test all filtering facepiece respirators, regardless of type, brand or quality. TSI’s N95 Companion technology makes these broad testing capabilities possible for all respirators with <99% filter efficiency, including CE FFP2/FFP1 filtering facepiece respirators.

Find out more at tsi.com/stronger