Personal Protective Equipment
The following are general guidelines to aid the Incident Safety Officer in establishing PPE levels. The majority of deployment tasks will take place in Level D or modified Level D.
The EPA Modified Level D protection scheme consists of the following PPE:
- Cotton or disposable, chemical-resistant (Tyvek®) work uniform or coveralls.
- Leather, steel-toed work boots (with chemical resistant overboots as necessary) or chemical-resistant, steel-toed boots meeting American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standard Z41-1983, Safety-Toe Footwear, Classification 75. Approval of the boot type will be the responsibility of the Incident Safety Officer.
- Eye protection, such as faceshields, goggles, or safety glasses with side shields that meet ANSI standard Z87.1-1979 (required for operations where debris may become airborne such as dusty conditions or where splashing of liquids is a concern). Approval of eye protection equipment will be the responsibility of the Incident Safety Officer.
- Hard hats meeting ANSI standard Z89.1-1986, Class A, B and C (required only for operations around heavy equipment or in the presence of overhead hazards).
- Chemical-resistant (nitrile) gloves when handling samples or coming in physical contact with any material in the area of investigation.
- Hearing protection, such as ear plugs or muffs (during operation of heavy equipment).
If an upgrade in PPE to Level C is required during the field activities, personnel will wear, as a minimum, the above items with the following additions:
- NIOSH approved full-face air purifying respirators (APR) with dual organic vapor and high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters as a minimum.
Upgrade to Level B will include wearing a pressure-demand self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA), chemical-resistant clothing, chemical-resistant inner and outer gloves, chemical-resistant outer boots, and a hard hat. Upgrade to Level A requires wearing all Level B equipment cited above in addition to a chemical-resistant fully encapsulating suit.
NOTE: APHIS does not currently have the ability or resources to upgrade to Level A or B.