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Selecting suitable respiratory protective equipment

Date of publication:
October 2014
Series code:

This information sheet provides advice to employers and operatives on the selection of respiratory protective equipment (RPE) for use with both hardwood and softwood dust.

You should always try to prevent exposure to hazardous substances, such as wood dust, by controlling any wood dust produced at source. The best way for you to do this is by having effective local exhaust ventilation (LEV).

RPE is no substitute for controlling the dust at source and you should only use it as additional protection. For example, you might need to use respirators and other personal protection as a temporary measure where engineering controls are being developed and/or modified. They may also be needed for short-term jobs such as cleaning and maintenance that produce high levels of dust.

Changes since the last edition:

Updated: 2021-03-23