Since the beginning of the 19th century, the importance of a respiratory mask became relevant. The respiratory masks have been used since then to enhance protection for workers in varied environments from mines to food production firms as well as construction sites. The statement ‘safety first’ almost sounds like a cliché to most. However, it’s when one develops diseases and complications as a result of inhaling harmful particles that one gets to understand that above everything- even incomes, you should take your safety at work absolutely seriously. Most safety equipment in many industrial settings, shield one from physical harm, however, respiratory masks will shield you from elements of the workplace that you might at times not even see with your naked eyes or smell but lethal. This hence is the more reason why respiratory masks are an essential workplace safety equipment.
A respiratory mask is essentially an equipment designed to protect the one wearing it from inhaling harmful matter, just like the ones from Clean Space Tech. They cover the nose and mouth or the entire face and head in their use depending on the kind of design employed. Whichever design it maybe its sole role remains to shield one from inhaling harmful substances.
Some work areas feature oxygen-deprived environments. This is especially true for deep underground mines as well as very high attitude areas. This thus calls for a secondary source of oxygen. For this, a Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus is used. This has an air cylinder, a pressure gauge, a regulator as well as the respiratory mask. This thus provides a reliable source of oxygen for use even in heavily oxygen-deprived environments for example in the case of fire fighters. The impact of operating in oxygen-deficient environments without a secondary oxygen source include:
· Brain damage and mental failure
· Poor judgment as well as poor coordination
· Reduced intellectual performance
· Reduced ability to work
· Convulsions and death
As seen from above, the repercussions of operating in oxygen-deficient environments can be lethal. This thus emphasizes the importance of respiratory masks coupled with air cylinders to serve the role of a secondary oxygen source.
Some work environments contain dust especially mining areas as well cement factories. The complications that arise from operating in these environments without proper protection include pneumoconiosis. This is a condition commonly known as ‘dusty lungs.’ In areas with asbestos dust, a complication known as asbestosis may develop. This inhalation may also lead to the development of cancer. This thus calls for a safety equipment that will help avoid the inhalation of this dust. That is where the respiratory mask comes in handy. They contain filters that retain the particulate particles and prevent one from inhaling them.
There are workplaces in which there is the presence of toxic substances. This happens especially when there isn’t an adequate system to control the toxic substances. In such areas, respirators are very important. Air-purifying respirators maybe applied in these cases. They work to shield one from the particulate particles that would otherwise be very harmful if inhaled.
There are instances where the work environment involves using very harmful and volatile liquids. This means that the liquids readily vaporize. It is hardly possible to avoid the inhalation of such vapors. This then is where the respirator will serve to shield one from the vapor. Some respirators have properties that enable them to block the inhalation of these particles or may dilute the gases to harmless ones that would pose no risk if inhaled.
Some gases and fumes in the workplace especially carbon monoxide, are odorless and colorless. This means their detection is almost impossible until when the effects of their inhalation are experienced which may at times be too late. This thus calls for equipment that will shield you always against such eventualities. This is where the respirators are very effective as they are able to take care of those gases even without needing your intervention.
In most countries, the industrial laws dictate that respiratory masks must be used especially in the high prone work environments like construction sites and mines. This means that in as much as it might be just individual health consciousness, it is also an obligation by law. This thus means penalties may accrue as a result of failure to observe the law.
There are a very many health risks that are brought about by the inhalation of particulate particles at the workplace. Some are instant while others like asbestos, over time, will yield life-threatening conditions like cancer. The majority of the particles are lethal if inhaled. This thus emphasizes the importance of respiratory masks to work to alleviate those risks.
Thus the use of respiratory masks is not only a requirement by law but an important health and safety practice to ensure one’s safety at the workplace.