2018-01-01 12:00 - Messages

Firefighter attitudes, norms, beliefs, barriers, and behaviors toward post-fire decontamination processes in an era of increased cancer risk

Firefighters' are exposed to carcinogens such as volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) during fires and from their personal protective equipment (PPE). Recent research has shown that decontamination processes can reduce contamination on both gear and skin. While firefighter cultures that honor dirty gear are changing, little is known about current attitudes and behaviors toward decontamination in the fire service. Four hundred eighty-five firefighters from four departments completed surveys about their attitudes, beliefs, perceived norms, barriers, and behaviors toward post-fire decontamination processes. Overall firefighters reported positive attitudes, beliefs, and perceived norms about decontamination, but showering after a fire was the only decontamination process that occurred regularly, with field decontamination, use of cleansing wipes, routine gear cleaning, and other behaviors all occurring less frequently. Firefighters reported time and concerns over wet gear as barriers to decontamination.

Source: Harrison, T. R., Wendorf Muhamad, J., Yang, F., Morgan, S. E., Talavera, E., Caban-Martinez, A. et Kobetz, E. (2017). Journal of occupational and environmental hygiene.
https://doi.org/10.1080/15459624.2017.1416389

Predictive multiscale computational model of shoe-floor coefficient of friction

Understanding the frictional interactions between the shoe and floor during walking is critical to prevention of slips and falls, particularly when contaminants are present. A multiscale finite element model of shoe-floor-contaminant friction was developed that takes into account the surface and material characteristics of the shoe and flooring in microscopic and macroscopic scales. The model calculates shoe-floor coefficient of friction (COF) in boundary lubrication regime where effects of adhesion friction and hydrodynamic pressures are negligible. The validity of model outputs was assessed by comparing model predictions to the experimental results from mechanical COF testing. The multiscale model estimates were linearly related to the experimental results (p<0.0001). The model predicted 73% of variability in experimentally-measured shoe-floor-contaminant COF. The results demonstrate the potential of multiscale finite element modeling in aiding slip-resistant shoe and flooring design and reducing slip and fall injuries.

Source: Moghaddam, S. R. M., Acharya, A., Redfern, M. S., et Beschorner, K. E. (2018). Journal of biomechanics, 66, 145-152.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jbiomech.2017.11.009

ASTM F2100 - 11(2018) - Standard Specification for Performance of Materials Used in Medical Face Masks

This specification covers the classifications, performance requirements, and test methods for the materials used in the construction of medical face masks that are used in health care services such as surgery and patient care. Medical face mask material performance is based on testing for bacterial filtration efficiency, differential pressure, sub-micron particulate filtration efficiency, resistance to penetration by synthetic blood, and flammability. This specification does not address all aspects of medical face mask design and performance, the effectiveness of medical face mask designs as related to the barrier and breathability properties, and respiratory protection, which may be necessary for some health care services.

Source: https://www.astm.org/Standards/F2100.htm

ASTM F1301-18 - Standard Practice for Labeling Chemical Protective Clothing

This practice contains the recommendations for minimal informational requirements for the identification of chemical protective clothing items. It is intended to provide the user with some of the basic information necessary for the proper selection and use of the chemical protective clothing.
For some items of chemical protective clothing, such as disposable chemical protective gloves, it is recognized that it is not practical that the labeling information be provided directly on the product. Therefore, it is permissible that this information be provided on the direct packaging that contains the product. As an example, it is possible to put the recommended product information on the dispenser box that contains multiple pairs of disposable chemical protective gloves.
Additional information beyond the content recommended by this practice is permitted to be applied to the label. This additional label content can include statements indicating compliance with specific standards, warnings, limitations associated with the product, and certain types of use, care, and maintenance information as addressed in Practice F2061.
Rules and regulations in Title 16 Code of Federal Regulations Part 303 cover the identification of fibers in textile products, specifically the disclosure of the fiber content and the manner of labeling products for purposes of applying tariffs on imported products and for informing the consumer. This practice is not intended to be a replacement for the requirements in 16 CFR 303, which may still apply to certain types of chemical protective clothing.

Source: https://www.astm.org/Standards/F1301.htm

An Update on the State of Anti-Fog Eye and Face Protection, Technologies and Best Practices

Fog limits the effectiveness of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for eye and face protection. According to the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), it is one of the three most significant barriers to their use, ahead of lack of comfort and fit and scratching. If lenses are fogged, people won’t wear them. If workers can’t see, they could have accidents.
Fog forms on a surface when water vapor in air condenses in fine droplets. A good anti-fog (AF) coating should prevent the formation of such droplets, but not all AF coatings are the same. Typical AF products perform well right out of the package. But after use and cleaning, the coatings will lose effectiveness and come off over time.
State-of-the-art premium permanent AF coatings are more durable, washable, and better performing but aren’t always used or necessary in all environments.

Source: https://safetyequipment.org/knowledge-center-items/whats-new-update-state-anti-fog-eye-face-protection-technologies-best-practices/

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