When the AQI is 69 – 150, respiratory protection will be provided to employees upon request, with the understanding that if supplies are limited, the employee may be asked or encouraged to supply their own. When the AQI reaches or exceeds 151, PLU must provide respirators at no cost to all employees and encourage them to use respirators.
The types of respirators available at PLU are N95’s with or without valves and KN95’s. This is considered “voluntary use” so these employees do not need to receive fit testing or medical clearance prior to use. Employees are also permitted to provide their own respirators.
Employees who choose to voluntarily use a respirator must be aware that respirators can create hazards for the user. Employees who request to wear their own or a PLU-provided respirator in this situation will be asked to complete the Voluntary Respirator Use Form, and sent a video link that will instruct them on how to safely don, wear, and doff their respirator.
They will be instructed to:
- Read and follow all instructions provided by the manufacturer about use, maintenance (cleaning and care), and warnings regarding the respirator’s limitations.
- Choose respirators that have been certified by NIOSH.
- Keep track of the respirator (in a bag or other container) so it is not mistaken for someone else’s.
- Examine the respirator prior to each use and do not use one that is damaged.