Filtering Facepiece

Last Updated: May 22, 2018

Definition - What does Filtering Facepiece mean?

A filtering facepiece is a type of respirator that lowers the amount of particulates that the wearer might inhale in a hazardous environment by filtering the air through the material of which the mask is made. It is a negative pressure respirator so the wearer is not supplied with oxygen while wearing it. Oxygen is supplied to the wearer through normal inhalation of breath where the mask allows the oxygen through and blocks the particulates. A filtering facepiece is sometimes called a dust mask.

WorkplaceTesting explains Filtering Facepiece

In some workplace environments, airborne contaminants can threaten the lives of workers who are exposed to them on a daily basis. The filtering facepiece respirator protects the worker from inhaling dangerous levels of these particulates, such as wood dust, certain fumes, and other particulates depending on the particulate size and the specifications of the particular filtering facepiece materials. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health regulates the standards and procedures to be followed in the workplace where workers are exposed to such conditions. The filtering facepiece is given a rating based on these standards. Specifically, a filtering facepiece is indicated as either N, R, or P which means not oil-resistant, oil resistant, or very oil-resistant respectively. The mask is also given a filtering efficiency rating of either 95, 99, or 100%.

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