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Pandatank  
#1 Posted : 08 January 2021 15:56:17(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Pandatank

As a Health and Safety professional with over 20 years experience that started with the HSE, I am quite familiar with the phenomenon of "elfansafetygawnmad" where public opinion has been (mis)led to believe that the law requires something that couldn't be further from the truth. HSE was even for ed to publish tbeir "myth of the month" to minimise the damage caused by this misinformation. Usually, the root cause of this misinformation turns out to be an issue of liability (and/or insurance). Considering how much damage this has done to the reputation and credibility of our profession, I find it surprising that so few of us haven't raised objections about the current "mask mandate" which seems to follow the same familiar pattern of misinformation. The law actually says "You must wear a FACE COVERING in a relevant place or while on public transport". Let's just ignore the fact that the Secretary of State passed these regulations into law without any Parliamentary scrutiny at all (it even states this in the introductory text) and focus on what the regulations require and look at what they might achieve; Face coverings - includes any kind of mask, scarf, snood, bandana or face visor that covers the nose and mouth. Question 1, apart from mainstream media (notorious for peddling misinformation, usually by oversimplification) who else is spreading the idea that "you must wear a mask"? - Basically, every major organisation including the NHS and DoE is providing guidance stating mask wearing is compulsory indoors unless you are exempt (if you actually read the list of exemptions and their wording, basically the face covering mandate is entirely voluntary. Anybody who states "wearing a mask/face covering will cause me severe distress" is exempt no further explanation or evidence required). This phenomenon of official guidance deviating markedly from what the law actually requires is not new, it is a result of civil service instructions to simplify the Law to make it more understandable to the general public. This has generally taken the form of downgrading certain ACOPs to guidance and revisions of existing guidance. However, I believe that this is the first instance where oversimplification may be actively causing widespread harm. Question 2, "what do the Coronavirus Face Coverings Regulations actually achieve?" This is a voluntary social experiment into the harms caused by extensive mask use by the general public. Your choice of what face covering to use, it's effectiveness at protecting the wearer and/or other people in contact with the wearer and even whether to use a face covering at all is entirely up to you. You can choose to participate or not and you can choose to what extent you participate by your choice of face covering. As H&S professionals, I shouldn't have to explain why PPE is at the bottom of the hierarchy of controls. But (and here's the sneaky bit) face coverings aren't being mandated to protect the wearer (otherwise they'd be PPE and subject to standards of manufacture, performance and would require suitable and sufficient instruction, training and monitoring for compliance.) They are being mandated to protect other people from the risk of presymptomatic and asymptomatic viral transmission. I will continue this in my reply to my post as I'm concerned about hitting the character limit....
peter gotch  
#2 Posted : 08 January 2021 16:06:14(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
peter gotch

Pandatank

Welcome to the Forums.

Each of your questions has been discussed at considerable length on these Forums over the last 9+ months.

Roundtuit  
#3 Posted : 08 January 2021 16:24:02(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/face-coverings-when-to-wear-one-and-how-to-make-your-own/face-coverings-when-to-wear-one-and-how-to-make-your-own

Updated guidance 4th December 2020 added "why visors were not suitable on their own".

The regulation for England however still only refers to a covering for the nose and mouth unlike the regulation for Scotland which specifically excludes visors.

We now have Khan declaring an emergency and demanding "masks" be worn on the streets of London whilst the Met Police are stating the exempt MUST get a medical certificate not to wear one despite this NOT being a legal requirement.

All the time Joe Public is trudging around in masks with exhalation valves thereby defeating the whole intended purpose to protect others.

Roundtuit  
#4 Posted : 08 January 2021 16:24:02(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/face-coverings-when-to-wear-one-and-how-to-make-your-own/face-coverings-when-to-wear-one-and-how-to-make-your-own

Updated guidance 4th December 2020 added "why visors were not suitable on their own".

The regulation for England however still only refers to a covering for the nose and mouth unlike the regulation for Scotland which specifically excludes visors.

We now have Khan declaring an emergency and demanding "masks" be worn on the streets of London whilst the Met Police are stating the exempt MUST get a medical certificate not to wear one despite this NOT being a legal requirement.

All the time Joe Public is trudging around in masks with exhalation valves thereby defeating the whole intended purpose to protect others.

John Murray  
#5 Posted : 08 January 2021 17:35:16(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
John Murray

Many think I'm extracting the urine because I'm using an FFP3 respirator, no valve, to go to shops etc...oh well...

Also, while, as you said, many are exempt because they paid 50p for a nice ribbon with sunflowers on, common sense should be telling those who have respiratory, or other, problems, that not wearing a mask/covering is more than slightly stupid. Yes, breathing is harder. Breathing is also a lot harder if you have an infection!

On the brighter side of #lockdown3, there are no queues at the blood test clinic.

Quite how the PTB are going to roll-out the vaccinations is a worry....all the GPs' seem to have disappeared....still waiting....

Pandatank  
#6 Posted : 08 January 2021 18:00:45(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Pandatank

I say presymptomatic and asymptomatic, because symptomatic persons would follow (roughly) the hierarchy of controls by self isolation, quarantine etc. Question 3- "How effective at preventing viral transmission is your choice of face covering?" Well, in terms of protecting the wearer, the effectiveness of various masks is well documented, HSE decrees that adequate protection against viral aerosol is an FFP3/N99 Respirator, which gives a hundredfold reduction in viral aerosol (99%). HSE has also stated that during emergencies only (such as an epidemic) FFP2/N95 levels of protection is an "acceptable risk". Acceptable in this case equates to a sixfold reduction in viral aerosol ie. 16.666%. Meaning 83.333% of viral aerosol will pas through the filter!!!! I don't know whether you agree that this level of exlosure is acceptable, but let's set this as our lower limit for performance acceptability. NB. This is only for the protection of the wearer ie. A mask worn as PPE. The problem is, all FFP3 respirators and most FFP2 Masks use exhaust valves to prevent CO2 poisoning and various symptoms of oxygen deprivation that can damage health. These valves offer zero protection to other people in the vicinity of the wearer, either fron droplet or aerosol. So the mask/respirator that protects the wearer does nothing to protect anyone else. So overall effectiveness of preventing viral transmission (both ways) for an FFP3 respirator is a 50% reduction. Overall protection for a valved N95 mask is an 8.3% reduction. An N95 surgical mask or an unvalved N95 redirects exhaled breath across the face fit seal in all directions, so it is arguable that there is some small level of increased protection afforded to other persons in comparison with a valved mask with the same filtration performance. Let's just assume an overall performance achievement of 10% reduction in viral aerosol transmission. Real world studies of analysis of surgical masks used in hospital settings (both N95 and standard 3ply) show that best case (N95) reduction of bacterial and fungal contamination (which can be collected and grown in vitro) is 75% ie. A quarter of the contamination on the outside of the mask was present on the inside of the mask. Please note, bacterial and fungal spores are over 100x bigger than viral particles. These are single use sterile hospital masks used in clinical settings by trained personnel with an awareness of the risks. Not a member of the public transferring viral droplets on their forehead or neck to the inside of their homemade laundered once a week facemask prior to strapping it over their nose and mouth and inhaling virons. Selection of suitable RPE is probably one ot the most complicated tasks a H&S professional performs, yet it is the "go to" solution given to the public. There is very little scientifc evidence available on the efficacy of face visors, but having performed the Risk Assessment, the recommendation I offer my friends is "if you have to wear a facecovering, use a visor in preference to wearing a mask". For having the effrontery to question the "just wear a mask" narrative, Ivebeen called a conspiracy theorist, an anti-vaxxer, flat earther who's killing people with fake news and no amount of supporting evidence for my position will convince them Im not. I've introduced this topic to this forum to have a rational discussion with competent people who can at least understand why I hold my position.
Pandatank  
#7 Posted : 08 January 2021 18:12:18(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Pandatank

Originally Posted by: peter gotch Go to Quoted Post
PandatankWelcome to the Forums. Each of your questions has been discussed at considerable length on these Forums over the last 9+ months.
Thanks Peter, I did a quick search prior to posting but only got hits for one COVID discussion not really relevant to this specific issue. My apologies, my year has been absolutely appalling starting with the sudden death of my father, havi g to care for my disabled mum who lives 100 miles from me, the loss of 3. other "uncles" of my father's generation, extended furlough leading to redundancy interviews, being diagnosed as seriously depressed and signed off as unfit for work since April, my employer refusing to recognise the doctor's note, and finally making me redundant in my abscence a week before the last lockdown.
Pandatank  
#8 Posted : 08 January 2021 18:16:09(UTC)
Rank: New forum user
Pandatank

Originally Posted by: peter gotch Go to Quoted Post
PandatankWelcome to the Forums. Each of your questions has been discussed at considerable length on these Forums over the last 9+ months.
Thanks Peter, I did a quick search prior to posting but only got hits for one COVID discussion not really relevant to this specific issue. My apologies, my year has been absolutely appalling starting with the sudden death of my father, havi g to care for my disabled mum who lives 100 miles from me, the loss of 3. other "uncles" of my father's generation, extended furlough leading to redundancy interviews, being diagnosed as seriously depressed and signed off as unfit for work since April, my employer refusing to recognise the doctor's note, and finally making me redundant in my abscence a week before the last lockdown.
Roundtuit  
#9 Posted : 08 January 2021 19:24:16(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

your postings are unfortunately rather torturous to follow given the volume of text without clearly identifiable breaks.

It may be down to the device you are working on - when I use my tablet rather than a PC or phone it fails to insert the return spaces I have placed within the post.

Roundtuit  
#10 Posted : 08 January 2021 19:24:16(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

your postings are unfortunately rather torturous to follow given the volume of text without clearly identifiable breaks.

It may be down to the device you are working on - when I use my tablet rather than a PC or phone it fails to insert the return spaces I have placed within the post.

John Murray  
#11 Posted : 09 January 2021 00:00:30(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
John Murray

Originally Posted by: Pandatank Go to Quoted Post
The problem is, all FFP3 respirators and most FFP2 Masks use exhaust valves to prevent CO2 poisoning and various symptoms of oxygen deprivation that can damage health.

How strange.

None of the FFP3 facepieces I own (bought in packs of 10) have an exhaust valve. The FFP2 ones that I have also have no valves. You can, of course, buy each type either with or without valves.

thanks 1 user thanked John Murray for this useful post.
aud on 12/01/2021(UTC)
peter gotch  
#12 Posted : 09 January 2021 12:32:25(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
peter gotch

Pandatank

Sorry to hear of your recent experiences but there has been lots of discussion here about e.g. the fact that masks and visors worn by people are NOT intended as PPE.

Equally, that the legislation and guidance (in each case slightly different in the "four nations") is such that it is very easy for people to find excuses (some valid, some less so) not the follow the "rules".

We have also been hit by some pushing the line that it's all a hoax.

P

AcornsConsult  
#13 Posted : 09 January 2021 16:33:17(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
AcornsConsult

Originally Posted by: Roundtuit Go to Quoted Post
the Met Police are stating the exempt MUST get a medical certificate not to wear one despite this NOT being a legal requirement.

All the time Joe Public is trudging around in masks with exhalation valves thereby defeating the whole intended purpose to protect others.

Thanks for the reminder on that.   This was discussed on another forum about police requiring a doctor'scertificate.  It's barmy!  It's not in legislation, it's a wholly avoidable waste of doctor's time, what can they write as a way to demonstrate legal exemption if there is not one, and then it's for the mere slight chance the person may find a police officer to then get stopped.  I wonder if the local authorities as the other enforcement agency have a similar requirement!

I can just see the courts filling up with not guilty please or a swathe of refunds for the few who get prosecuted.  

John Murray  
#14 Posted : 09 January 2021 16:41:33(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
John Murray

You won’t get a doctors certificate to certify mask exemption, there is no such thing. If you want a letter, you’ll have to pay for it; provision of one is not in a doctors NHS contract.
chris.packham  
#15 Posted : 10 January 2021 07:26:33(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
chris.packham

It is not just exhalation valves that concern me. I now have a paper about a study that looked at the effectiveness of facial coverings. When they examined different coverings and their ability to prevent emission of ultrafine particles they found none that was 100%. Indeed, the N95 mask was only just over 50%. Facial coverings from other materials ranged from 47% down to just 10%. What they did not measure (or at least it was not in the paper) was the velocity at which these ultrafine particles emerged from the facial covering. This information is important as it allows us to estimate how far the particles might travel and thus the social distance required. More and more I believe that we have a need for a standard for facial coverings if these are to achieve the effect that is so badly needed.

thanks 1 user thanked chris.packham for this useful post.
aud on 12/01/2021(UTC)
John Murray  
#16 Posted : 10 January 2021 08:17:44(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
John Murray

Since the standard of face coverings varies wildly, and their fit-to-the-face varies even more, IMHO their use is ... useless.

Even the "standard" 'surgical' facemask is pretty useless at preventing a person breathing in an infectious particle.

The HSE actually tested various of these items in 2008, and used an inactivated influenza virus as the test matter:

"In principle, surgical masks provide adequate protection against large droplets, splashes and contact transmission. There is a common misperception that they will provide protection against aerosols. This study did not assess the protective capacity of surgical masks against large droplets, splashes and contact but rather focussed on their performance against a respiratory aerosol challenge. The results of this study confirm that surgical masks provide the lowest level of respiratory protection compared to FFP respirators. Furthermore, the level of protection afforded by surgical masks against inert aerosols is similar to the level of protection afforded against a live bioaerosol containing influenza virus. A reduction factor of around 6 can be anticipated, depending on the type of surgical mask used. Many surgical masks on the NHS logistics list tested here offer considerably less protection than this"

https://www.hse.gov.uk/research/rrpdf/rr619.pdf

I believe that there are adequate references provided !

chris.packham  
#17 Posted : 10 January 2021 12:41:28(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
chris.packham

John - the HSE study was looking at the level of protection afforded the wearer. In effect the use of a facial covering as a form of PPE. The study I referred to was evaluating the prevention of emitted virus from a positive wearer as protection against exposing others, i.e. not PPE. For me this is the primary purpose of the facial covering. The official policy is that we should all wear facial covering but there is no standard as to what this comprises, so are all these people wearing facial covering acutally achieving anything? For me this is typical of the amateurish ways in which our Government have been approaching the prevention of transmission of SARS-Cov-2 right from the start. I get the feeling that provided they believe they are showing they are taking action whether it is based on real data is of lesser significance. 

John Murray  
#18 Posted : 10 January 2021 12:55:39(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
John Murray

"For me this is typical of the amateurish ways in which our Government have been approaching the prevention of transmission of SARS-Cov-2 right from the start. I get the feeling that provided they believe they are showing they are taking action whether it is based on real data is of lesser significance"

Hmmm...

I considered the possibility they were either stupid or incompetent.

Then I looked at all the expert advice available to them, along with the deluge of information coming from all other countries, and looked at failure after failure.

I therefore reject the possibility of stupidity or incompetence. It is a careful progression along the route of herd immunity.

I won't go further, because last time I did--I got deleted!

Roundtuit  
#19 Posted : 10 January 2021 14:42:27(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

Where a person referred to in regulation 3(2)(b) or (c) is provided with respiratory protective equipment (RPE) by their employer to meet any of the relevant statutory provisions as defined by section 53 of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 in respect of any tasks they are performing, that person will, in wearing that RPE, be treated as complying with the requirement in regulation 3(1)

So despite "guidance" about no exhaust valves in public face coverings the regulations endorse equipment that may be designed and fitted with such devices.

If we had robot police they would fuse their logic circuits trying to resolve this - thankfully for the tabloids we have enforcement by people who have no understanding of what they have their ticket book out for

Roundtuit  
#20 Posted : 10 January 2021 14:42:27(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

Where a person referred to in regulation 3(2)(b) or (c) is provided with respiratory protective equipment (RPE) by their employer to meet any of the relevant statutory provisions as defined by section 53 of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 in respect of any tasks they are performing, that person will, in wearing that RPE, be treated as complying with the requirement in regulation 3(1)

So despite "guidance" about no exhaust valves in public face coverings the regulations endorse equipment that may be designed and fitted with such devices.

If we had robot police they would fuse their logic circuits trying to resolve this - thankfully for the tabloids we have enforcement by people who have no understanding of what they have their ticket book out for

chris.packham  
#21 Posted : 10 January 2021 16:44:40(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
chris.packham

Absolutely no reason why the PPE type mask should not be fitted with an exhaust valve. This reduces the effort and discomfort from wearing the mask. The problem arises when the mask is being worn as facial covering to protect others from the wearer emitting droplets/aerosols that could be a cause of spreading the virus. Here the exhaust valve simply negates the purpose for which the mask is being worn.

thanks 1 user thanked chris.packham for this useful post.
aud on 12/01/2021(UTC)
biker1  
#22 Posted : 11 January 2021 09:59:58(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
biker1

I'm afraid I find the whole debate about whether to wear face coverings a bit pointless, akin to debating where to place the deckchairs on the Titanic. Various figures have been put forward for their effectiveness, many of them based on the false premise that they are to protect the wearer. At the end of the day, they may not be 100% effective, very few things are, but they are a means of reducing the chance of infection to others, and something practical we can all do. The alternative is to dispense with them, which is going to help nobody. Yes, guidance and law need to be clarified for those who desire such clarification, but whether the wearing of them is guidance or law is of secondary importance as far as I'm concerned. Anything we can do to reduce the risk from this awful virus is worth doing, however inconvenient it might be at times.

thanks 2 users thanked biker1 for this useful post.
CptBeaky on 11/01/2021(UTC), chris42 on 11/01/2021(UTC)
chris.packham  
#23 Posted : 11 January 2021 10:15:12(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
chris.packham

Biker-1 - I could not agree more with you. My only reservation is that we need to be able to distinguish betwee the advice that is flawed and can make things worse and the genuine article. Reliance on common sense is not the best approach unfortunately, particularly in my field. In the words of Prof. Brian Cox: "Common sense is worthless and irrelevant when contemplating reality." So much of what appears to be common sense when dealing with skin issues in particular is not borne out by the scientific evidence.

Holliday42333  
#24 Posted : 11 January 2021 11:25:34(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Holliday42333

In the words of my elderly uncle this weekend on the subject "Crikey, if these masks dont actually do anything to protect others, thats the centurys old handkerchief industry down the pan as well!"

Edited by user 11 January 2021 11:26:10(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

thanks 5 users thanked Holliday42333 for this useful post.
Kate on 11/01/2021(UTC), chris42 on 11/01/2021(UTC), biker1 on 11/01/2021(UTC), CptBeaky on 11/01/2021(UTC), aud on 12/01/2021(UTC)
peter gotch  
#25 Posted : 11 January 2021 12:16:40(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
peter gotch

Holliday - for your elderly uncle!

I think there is plenty of evidence to indicate that where someone wears a face covering it will somewhat reduce the viral load they breathe, cough etc out in terms of exposure of others, but in particular how far that load will spread.

However, the use of face coverings was always supposed to be one of the least effective methods of protecting others.

But then the message from Governments got diluted so that masks appear to be highlighted as greater priority than measures such as keeping your distance.

As example the Scottish Government mantra is currently FACTS. Top of the agenda F for face mask - fourth of the letters in the acronym is T for two metres.

Partly the message got blurred by research showing that part of the viral load can travel much more than 2m depending on the circumstances, but if offered the choice between breathing in say, 3, portions of Covid or,  10 portions, the decision is quite easy from my perspective!

I also think that there has been a degree of trying to overthink the level of protection to others. So, if someone standing 2m from a person with Covid (but not showing symptoms) wearing a face covering might get between 1 and 5 portions depending on the nature of the face covering,  Still far better than 10 portions!!

So, your uncle's hanky still has its place, but as a minor part of the overall package of precautions.

thanks 1 user thanked peter gotch for this useful post.
biker1 on 11/01/2021(UTC)
Holliday42333  
#26 Posted : 11 January 2021 12:38:15(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Holliday42333

Peter, withouth getting him to log in I think I can express what he was trying to get at.

He is well aware that it is low down on the effectiveness scale, but is getting 'fed up' with people trying to find reasons for not doing basic things that in a different format have been accepted for years as a common courtesy.

The only difference between holding a handkerchief to your face when sneezing and coughing is that a facemask is always there so there is less chance of a timing issue.

Apparently he has carried a clean hankerchief every day for this purpose for decades, would be embarrased to be found without one and sees wearing a facemask for a period far shorter than this as no inconvenience worth debating.

He's definately in the 'stop complaining and get on with it' camp with regards following the controls.

Personally, I dont see the issue (even as a glasses wearer).  Just wear one, properly, when interactions may occur and if scientfically it turns out they didn't do very much then what have you lost? (Genuine psycological issues aside)

Edited by user 11 January 2021 12:40:26(UTC)  | Reason: Additional text

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Kate on 11/01/2021(UTC)
firesafety101  
#27 Posted : 11 January 2021 13:10:19(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
firesafety101

Is PPE no longer the last resort as it used to be.  All this talk of mask wearing seems to take the onus away from Social Distancing which is surely the most effective method of preventing cross infection.

While I agree face coverings should be used if people stay at home there is low risk of infection.

How about the rule to caugh into your elbow than touch elbows instead of a handshake ha ha haaaaa

 

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A Kurdziel on 12/01/2021(UTC)
peter gotch  
#28 Posted : 11 January 2021 13:54:25(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
peter gotch

Holliday - thanks for the clarification.

I'm in the same camp as your uncle!

Just concerned that there is too much focus on face coverings at the expense of the more important measures.

Starting to worry that the manners that were prevalent in the first lock down have become diluted. If I stop in the street as there isn't space to get past the people talking on the pavement in front of me, someone else just walks past me!

Brian Hagyard  
#29 Posted : 11 January 2021 13:59:25(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Brian Hagyard

As H&S safety professionals can we stop talking about face masks and be realy clear we are talking about FACE COVERINGS.

These are NOT PPE, they have NOT been introduced unedr Health and Safety Legislation but public health legislation. The use of face coverings is enforced by THE POLICE so clearly not health and safety.

Clearly they are NOT TO BE USED INSTEAD OF OTHER MEASURES but AS WELL AS.

The only place that PPE is being used againt the virus is within the medical profession, and the HSE jas been clear that here the correct type should be used with all the correct precautions such as face fit tests.

thanks 1 user thanked Brian Hagyard for this useful post.
A Kurdziel on 12/01/2021(UTC)
chris.packham  
#30 Posted : 11 January 2021 14:29:21(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
chris.packham

Social distancing is one important measure. But what distance? In the U.K. we have set this at 2 metres. Other coutries (and the WHO) have adopted different values. Which is right? Try to find a scientific basis for any one of them and you will be ignoring one simple fact. There is no simple one, fixed dimension.

Consider I am standing behind a person who is infected. The wind is blowing past me, then past them. Facing away from me they sneeze. What is the probability that the particles containing the virus will travel upwind for me to inhale. So I could be 250 cm away and still be safe. However, I am actually standing downwind of them. They sneeze. How far might what I term the 'inhalation zone' reach? Various studies on this have come up with different values, one as far as 10 metres! Now perhaps I am with them in a small room with no ventilation. They sneeze several times. How long before the ambient level of particles reaches what might be considered the dangerous one? 

Please don't misunderstand me. I am in favour of social distancing just as I am of facial covering (including eyes), PPE, hand decontamination, etc., etc. My view is that we need a Swiss Cheese approach. Lots of layers, each with holes. Enough layers and you can achieve a total barrier. There can be no silver bullet. Even vaccination does not provide this as we have no evidence of the long term effect that this can achieve and it is by no means a 100% success story. We still do not know how mutations might affect the success rate.

Having spent quite some time studying what has been published both on SARS-Cov-2 and other infective micro-organisms I remain convinced that we will have do is continue to manage this virus and its consequences for quite some time, albeit hopefully in a less intensive mode so that a return to some new 'normal' can be reached.

chris.packham  
#31 Posted : 11 January 2021 14:37:33(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
chris.packham

Brian - you mention face fit testing. Have you looked at the PAPR (positive air pressure respirator), the one that uses a small electic pump to draw in filtered aid that is then passed into a hood and down over the user's face. Many hospitals are now going over to this system as it offers several benefits. No fit testing for a start. More importantly more effective filtering as the wearer does not have to provide the suction to draw the air through the filter so a more effective filter can be used, no issues with the tight fitting mask causing skin issues ( I am frequently asked for answers to this problem.) In work in pharmaceutical labs I have worn this type of protection on several occasions, sometimes for a whole shift. No discomfort, just a pleasent supply of fresh, filtered air. Good visibility, easy verbal communication, etc. Expensive to install perhaps, but long term arguably cost effective as can be cleaned and reused.

Kate  
#32 Posted : 11 January 2021 14:56:55(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Kate

Now I heard  a BBC newsreader today refer to enforcement of "health and safety rules" by which they meant Covid precautions in workplaces.

Brian is fighting a losing battle ...

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A Kurdziel on 12/01/2021(UTC), aud on 12/01/2021(UTC)
John Murray  
#33 Posted : 11 January 2021 16:31:32(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
John Murray

Originally Posted by: chris.packham Go to Quoted Post

Brian - you mention face fit testing. Have you looked at the PAPR (positive air pressure respirator), the one that uses a small electic pump to draw in filtered aid that is then passed into a hood and down over the user's face. Many hospitals are now going over to this system as it offers several benefits. No fit testing for a start. More importantly more effective filtering as the wearer does not have to provide the suction to draw the air through the filter so a more effective filter can be used, no issues with the tight fitting mask causing skin issues ( I am frequently asked for answers to this problem.) In work in pharmaceutical labs I have worn this type of protection on several occasions, sometimes for a whole shift. No discomfort, just a pleasent supply of fresh, filtered air. Good visibility, easy verbal communication, etc. Expensive to install perhaps, but long term arguably cost effective as can be cleaned and reused.

I have worn these at work, for complete shifts, and endorse their use.

MUCH better than passive respirators.

The only problem with them was/is that the filters can be expensive. They were £21 each. Fortunately, they come with an airflow "meter", so you can extend their use and lower the cost..

Holliday42333  
#34 Posted : 11 January 2021 16:34:36(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Holliday42333

Originally Posted by: John Murray Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: chris.packham Go to Quoted Post

Brian - you mention face fit testing. Have you looked at the PAPR (positive air pressure respirator), the one that uses a small electic pump to draw in filtered aid that is then passed into a hood and down over the user's face. Many hospitals are now going over to this system as it offers several benefits. No fit testing for a start. More importantly more effective filtering as the wearer does not have to provide the suction to draw the air through the filter so a more effective filter can be used, no issues with the tight fitting mask causing skin issues ( I am frequently asked for answers to this problem.) In work in pharmaceutical labs I have worn this type of protection on several occasions, sometimes for a whole shift. No discomfort, just a pleasent supply of fresh, filtered air. Good visibility, easy verbal communication, etc. Expensive to install perhaps, but long term arguably cost effective as can be cleaned and reused.

I have worn these at work, for complete shifts, and endorse their use.

MUCH better than passive respirators.

The only problem with them was/is that the filters can be expensive. They were £21 each. Fortunately, they come with an airflow "meter", so you can extend their use and lower the cost..

And if the purpose is to act as a face covering for protection of others (whatever the validity of this concept) then these are quite obviously worse than even close fitting respirators with exhaust valve and unsuited to this purpose.

Edited by user 11 January 2021 16:40:04(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

chris.packham  
#35 Posted : 11 January 2021 18:53:28(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
chris.packham

I agree. My posting was in response to Brian's comment on face fit testing and assumed that this was referring to PPE (defined as worn to protect the wearer). Facial covering is something completely different.

Brian Hagyard  
#36 Posted : 12 January 2021 08:32:30(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Brian Hagyard

Originally Posted by: chris.packham Go to Quoted Post

I agree. My posting was in response to Brian's comment on face fit testing and assumed that this was referring to PPE (defined as worn to protect the wearer). Facial covering is something completely different.

Chris. Thanks yes i am aware of other forms of PPE other than FFP2 or FFP3 - i know i sound like a stuck record - and Kate i will still continue fiting my battle - but unless you work in health care or labs where COVID is 100% known to be present - this is not a H&S issue its a public health issue - I think its important that we has H&S professionals try and stick together with the message. I appoligise for the capitals in my post - it was a bad day. I had just had a manager tell me she had made face coverings madatory on her site for everyone moving around because people were getting two close - and in the next breath telling me she had a Covid Secure Site!

chris.packham  
#37 Posted : 12 January 2021 09:29:49(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
chris.packham

I would love to know how we can create a Covid-19 secure site. With normal risk assessment, for example for chemicals, we know the hazard, where it is, how it is being used and what exposure occurs. With SARS-Cov-2 any person(s) could be a source of the virus and a spreader but completely asymptomatic. They could have tested negative yesterday but be infected today, or tomorrow. And the test only detects what is present inside the body (on the body is not covered but could result in transmission via fomites) and is dependent upon the swabs being taken correctly - not always easy. So false negatives are common. So how do you assess the risk of the virus being spread if you don't know where it is, if it is there at all? For me this adds a whole new dimension to the topics of risk assessment and exposure management. Can anyone confidently state that in their workplace it is impossible for the virus to be present and emitted into the environment, i.e. my workplace is Covid secure?

thanks 2 users thanked chris.packham for this useful post.
A Kurdziel on 12/01/2021(UTC), aud on 12/01/2021(UTC)
A Kurdziel  
#38 Posted : 12 January 2021 09:35:04(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
A Kurdziel

Simple, you need a certificate signed by the CEO saying “This workplace is Covid 19 secure”  

Holliday42333  
#39 Posted : 12 January 2021 09:40:01(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Holliday42333

Originally Posted by: chris.packham Go to Quoted Post

I would love to know how we can create a Covid-19 secure site. With normal risk assessment, for example for chemicals, we know the hazard, where it is, how it is being used and what exposure occurs. With SARS-Cov-2 any person(s) could be a source of the virus and a spreader but completely asymptomatic. They could have tested negative yesterday but be infected today, or tomorrow. And the test only detects what is present inside the body (on the body is not covered but could result in transmission via fomites) and is dependent upon the swabs being taken correctly - not always easy. So false negatives are common. So how do you assess the risk of the virus being spread if you don't know where it is, if it is there at all? For me this adds a whole new dimension to the topics of risk assessment and exposure management. Can anyone confidently state that in their workplace it is impossible for the virus to be present and emitted into the environment, i.e. my workplace is Covid secure?

You are right Chris but for one fundamental point, in my view.

The Covid Risk Assessment isn't actually a risk assessment at all.  Its a checklist where if you have a scenario on the checklist you should implement the controls listed.

Trying to justify the Covid Secure guidance with what safety professionals know as risk assessment is a folly in my opinion regardless of the terminology used.

In most of the Covid guidance so far, terminology seems to be used to communicate a concept in recognisable terms rather than for the strict definition of that terminology.

thanks 1 user thanked Holliday42333 for this useful post.
A Kurdziel on 12/01/2021(UTC)
John Murray  
#40 Posted : 12 January 2021 09:42:26(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
John Murray

Originally Posted by: Holliday42333 Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: John Murray Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: chris.packham Go to Quoted Post
Brian - you mention face fit testing. Have you looked at the PAPR (positive air pressure respirator), the one that uses a small electicpump to draw in filtered aid that is then passed into a hood and down over the user's face. Many hospitals are now going over to this system as it offers several benefits. No fit testing for a start. More importantly more effective filtering as the wearer does not have to provide the suction to draw the air through the filter so a more effective filter can be used, no issues with the tight fitting mask causing skin issues ( I am frequently asked for answers to this problem.) In work in pharmaceutical labs I have worn this type of protection on several occasions, sometimes for a whole shift. No discomfort, just a pleasent supply of fresh, filtered air. Good visibility, easy verbal communication, etc. Expensive to install perhaps, but long term arguably cost effective as can be cleaned and reused.
I have worn these at work, for complete shifts, and endorse their use. MUCH better than passive respirators. The only problem with them was/is that the filters can be expensive. They were £21 each. Fortunately, they come with an airflow "meter", so you can extend their use and lower the cost..
And if the purpose is to act as a face covering for protection of others (whatever the validity of this concept) then these are quite obviously worse than even close fitting respirators with exhaust valve and unsuited to this purpose.
Which is quite obvious. You seem to believe that people all wear face coverings to protect others. There may be some that do, but most wear them to protect themselves (I exclude h&s professionals from this discourse!) I wear ffp3 to protect both ways (no valve). I hasten to point-out that according to govt instruction, I fall into the category that does not need to wear any. Due mainly to the realisation that, with my problems, I really should wear respiratory protection, but also because of the increasing violence and insult towards those that fail to wear ‘protection’ . May the Gods of Health, Safety and Welfare protect you and others!
Brian Hagyard  
#41 Posted : 12 January 2021 09:45:13(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Brian Hagyard

You are right Chris but for one fundamental point, in my view.

The Covid Risk Assessment isn't actually a risk assessment at all.  Its a checklist where if you have a scenario on the checklist you should implement the controls listed.

Trying to justify the Covid Secure guidance with what safety professionals know as risk assessment is a folly in my opinion regardless of the terminology used.

In most of the Covid guidance so far, terminology seems to be used to communicate a concept in recognisable terms rather than for the strict definition of that terminology.

very well put Holliday!

Holliday42333  
#42 Posted : 12 January 2021 09:52:39(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Holliday42333

Originally Posted by: John Murray Go to Quoted Post
[ You seem to believe that people all wear face coverings to protect others. There may be some that do, but most wear them to protect themselves (I exclude h&s professionals from this discourse!)

Not at all, John.  The point is that if you wear a positive pressure respirator you will be protecting yourself but actively expelling your breath in the same way, if not worse, than a valved FFP respirator.  Good for the wearer not so good for anyone else who is just wearing a face covering.

If you have access to a non valved FFP3 respirators and choose to wear these to protect yourself AND others thats great.  That is not soething available to most.  We can't get FFP3 for our staff for work related hazards and have had to downgrade to FFP2 which are also a struggle to source.

John Murray  
#43 Posted : 12 January 2021 12:08:34(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
John Murray

56 in stock at local screwfix. Also powered filtration hood, clear screen, at £279!
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