19 Nov HSG53 Respiratory Protective Equipment at work
The HSE (Health and Safety Executive) document HSG53 covers respiratory protective equipment at work. Providing guidance on the selection, and use of, adequate and suitable respiratory protective equipment (RPE) in the workplace.
What does HSG53 cover?
Firstly, the 59 page guide tells you when you can use RPE. Using a simple step-by-step approach, it helps you to decide the adequate level of protection for a given hazardous substance. In addition, HSG53 advises how to select RPE that is suitable for the particular wearer, task and work environment. It also contains advice on how to make sure that the selected RPE keeps working effectively.
Who is the guidance for?
HSG53 will help those who have responsibility for the use of RPE at work. Regardless of whether you are self-employed or an employer, this guidance is for you. It supports the Approved Code of Practice (ACOP) to the Regulations that apply. It is also suitable for anyone responsible for managing staff health and safety. This includes safety representatives, health and safety specialists, manufacturers and suppliers of RPE.
How to use the guidance
As an employer you have a legal responsibility to control substances hazardous to health in your workplace. Therefore, you are responsible to prevent and adequately control your employees’ exposure to those substances. These legal obligations fall under the regulations below:
- The Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974
- Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999
- COSHH Regulations 2002
- Control of Asbestos Regulations 2012
- Control of Lead at Work Regulations 2002
- Ionising Radiations Regulations 1999
- Confined Spaces Regulations 1997
Please note: These Regulations are supported by Approved Codes of Practice. ACOPs give practical guidance on compliance and have a special status in law.
For RPE use that is not covered by any of the above Regulations, employers and employees have duties under the Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992.
COSHH Risk Assessment
The HSG53 guide assumes you are considering the use of RPE following a COSHH risk assessment (Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002). The information gathered in your COSHH risk assessment relating to risk and hazard is required to select the correct RPE.
Respiratory Protective Equipment (RPE) training is an essential part of any effective RPE programme. Therefore, anybody involved in the selection, use or maintenance of respiratory protection requires training. If you require help we offer a bespoke course. Our RPE training course is aimed at workers and management involved in the selection, use and maintenance of respiratory protective equipment (RPE). This course is conducted in accordance with the requirements of HSG53 by an experienced fit2fit accredited tester/instructor.
To download your own copy of the guidance see below: