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Are There Exemptions From Face Fit Testing?

Some respiratory protective equipment (RPE) is exempt from face fit testing; powered or constant flow breathing apparatus (BA) with a loose fitting hood or helmet, are exempt from face fit testing because they are not “close-fitting”.

Please carry on reading for other scenarios where an exemption from face fit testing may exist:

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Are there exemptions from Face Fit Testing?

There aren’t many scenarios where a face fit test isn’t needed. Here, we list a few examples of when a person wouldn’t need testing:

  • The worker has a type of RPE exempt from face fit testing; powered or constant-flow airline breathing apparatus (BA) with a loose-fitting hood or helmet do not require face-fit testing
  • The worker isn’t exposed to dust or chemical hazards
  • A hobbyist or DIYer would not require a face fit test so long as their work is not for reward

That’s not to say that we think it’s a good idea to not be tested even if one of these exemptions apply to you. What if your equipment that doesn’t need a face fit test breaks down, what will your back-up plan be to ensure you are both protected and compliant?

A keen DIYer would benefit immeasurably from being face fit tested for their chosen mask. Both at home and at work the tales of safety glasses steaming up are plentiful. Tell-tale mucky streaks down the sides of the nose or under the nostrils are giveaways that the mask simply isn’t working.

Take a look at the following graphic showing the reality of exposure to dust and chemicals amongst the UK workforce:

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