Breathing Air Quality
Breathing Air Legal Requirements in the UK
Most employers are aware that they have a duty of care to their employees. This means that they must take all reasonable steps to ensure their health, safety and well being. However, the details of the legal requirement, especially when it comes to breathing air, aren’t so widely known.
In the UK, the BS EN12021 advises that samples should be taken and analysed at least every three months or more frequently if there has been a change in, or concerns about, the production process. Furthermore, records of those tests must be kept for five years.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) guideline document “Respiratory Protective Equipment at Work” (HSG53) states that the frequency of such tests should be based on a risk assessment, but again they should take place at least every three months, and more often when the consistent quality of air cannot be assured.
The reason for this stringent legislation is that poorly maintained air compressors can be extremely hazardous to an operator’s health. For example, failure to change the breathing air filter cartridge every 400 hours or 3 months, whichever is sooner, can cause serious harm to the operator, potentially resulting in permanent damage to their lungs.
Airblast Eurospray also recommends that filter cartridges are replaced in the event of large pressure drops, if unusual tastes are present in the air supplied to the respirator, or if moisture is found at the outlet fittings.
Air Purity Analyser
We use Safewell air analysis equipment to give you a detailed breakdown of your breathing air supply. Good quality testing equipment can cost thousands of pounds to purchase, which is why, for most companies, it is more cost effective to have an expert visit your site and carry out the tests for you. Our highly trained technicians can measure:
- BA Flow
- Carbon Monoxide
- Carbon Dioxide
- Dew point
Airblast Eurospray believes that it’s important for all companies that use breathing air to be aware of the dangers of inadequate compressed air quality testing. Some employers in the UK rely on annual compressor services in place of regular breathing air quality tests, which means they may unknowingly fall short of legal requirements. Airblast Eurospray encourages those involved in the shot blasting industry to take the time to understand the importance of regular checks and equipment maintenance.