HSE has published Research Report RR1087 – Market surveillance of FFP3 disposable respirators containing the findings of an HSE project involving the testing of respirators claiming compliance with class FFP3.
The FFP3 class of respiratory protection is used in the construction sector to control exposure to asbestos where non-enclosure removal work is in progress and where there is respirable crystalline silica (RCS) and other dusts in the work atmosphere.
Three models had multiple faults
The HSE report describes ‘market surveillance testing’ of samples of ten FFP3 respirator models from ten different manufacturers that are available on the UK market. The authors state:
“The aim was to determine whether each sample meets a range of health and safety performance requirements required by the standard. Only five of the ten models passed all tests with no faults or failures. Two models had an isolated fault on a single sample, one of which was very serious, rendering the respirator ineffective.
Three models had multiple faults, two of them serious.
The information provided with the masks by the manufacturers was generally acceptable, although four out of the ten manufacturers included no or limited information on pre-use checks.”