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SEL Number: 01AR-03-PAPW
Title: Respirator, Powered Air-Purifying (PAPR), Wildland Fire Fighting


Last Updated: 10/11/2018 4:09:00 PM

Previous SEL Number: 01AR-03-PAPW

Description: Wildland Fire Fighting Powered Air-Purifying Respirator (WFF-PAPR), certified by NIOSH as compliant with the WFF-PAPR performance requirements and certified as compliant to NFPA 1984 Standard on Respirators for Wildland Fire Fighting Operations. Depending on the respirator design, this item includes the respirator canister/cartridge component certified as complaint under the NIOSH Wildland Fire Fighting Air-Purifying Respirator approval and the NFPA 1984 standard.

ImportantFeatures: NIOSH has established specific criteria for wildland fire-fighting powered air-purifying respirators. These criteria include existing tests established in 42 CFR Part 84, supplemented by additional tests for specific performance against selected chemical and particulate hazards and other areas of performance. The respirator shall be certified by NIOSH prior to certification to the NFPA 1984 standard. The respirator can be designed as either a full facepiece respirator or a non-full facepiece respirator. Full face piece respirator designs shall accommodate corrective eyewear that is certified by NIOSH as a respirator accessory. Non-full facepiece respirators shall be designed to accommodate protective eyewear, including, but not limited to, corrective eyewear, safety glassed, and gas-tight goggles.

The WFF-PAPR canister/cartridge label is color-coded with black font, and lists the type of chemical and particulate hazards against which it is rated.


Operating Considerations: Worn as-directed by the authority having jurisdiction, and with protective clothing and equipment compliant with NFPA 1977 Standard on Protective Clothing and Equipment for Wildland Fire Fighting.

Powered air-purifying respirators (PAPR) cannot be used in environments classified as immediately dangerous to life and health (IDLH) and further, cannot be used when the oxygen concentration in the environment is less than 19.5%. PAPRs must be fitted with the appropriate canister or cartridge, and should not be used in a flammable or potentially flammable environment. The length of canister or cartridge use time will depend on concentration of the hazardous substance, the temperature, relative humidity, and breathing (flow) rate through the canister or cartridge. Air-purifying respirator use is predicated on environmental monitoring in order to determine continued protection in accordance with OSHA 29 CFR Part 1910.134.

Consider power requirements in addition to protections. Based upon mission requirements, a low battery indicator is strongly recommended. Follow manufacturer's instructions regarding battery type and use.

Tight-fitting facepiece PAPRs must be fit-tested in a negative pressure mode in accordance with 29 CFR 1910.134. PAPRs with loose-fitting inlet covers do not require fit-testing.

NIOSH lists the following limitations for Air-Purifying Respirators which include both APRs and PAPRs:
1. Not for use in atmospheres containing less than 19.5 percent oxygen.
2. Not for use in atmospheres immediately dangerous to life and health or where hazards have not been fully characterized.
3. When used at defined occupational exposure limits, the rated service time cannot be exceeded. Follow established canister/cartridge change schedules or observe End of Service Life Indicators to ensure that canisters/cartridges are replaced before breakthrough occurs.
4. Failure to properly use and maintain this product could result in injury or death.
5. Follow the manufacturer's User's Instructions for changing canisters/cartridges.
6. All approved respirators shall be selected, fitted, used, and maintained in accordance with MSHA, OSHA, and other applicable regulations.
7. Use replacement parts in the configuration as specified by the applicable regulations and guidance.
8. Refer to User's Instructions and/or maintenance manuals for information on use and maintenance of these respirators.
9. Consult manufacturer's User's Instructions for information on the use, storage, and maintenance of these respirators at various temperatures.
10. Use in conjunction with personal protective ensembles that provide appropriate levels of protection against dermal hazard. Failure to do so may result in personal injury even when the respirator is properly fitted, used, and maintained.


Training Requirements: Core Training: OSHA 1910.120, OSHA 1910.134
Initial Training: Extensive (>2 days)
Sustainment Training: Extensive (>2 days)


Mandatory Standards:


Applicable Standards and References: