In most jobs involving the known presence of asbestos, your employer must provide you with asbestos exposure protective equipment at no cost to you and other employees.
Some of the high-risk occupations requiring asbestos protection include construction, auto repair, pipefitting and shipbuilding. If you are unsure whether you need protective equipment, ask your employer if your work or job site involves asbestos.
What types of asbestos protection do you need?
One of the problems workers face is not knowing what kind of protection they need. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has different protective gear standards for various industries. You can study these standards on the OSHA website to discover what is necessary for your specific Louisiana industry.
In the meantime, here are some examples of protective gear that minimizes asbestos exposure.
- Respirators. Single-use masks and disposable respirators are generally not recommended. It is better to have your employer provide asbestos respirators recommended or approved by OSHA.
- Garments. Disposable garments like coveralls minimize exposure while ensuring you do not contaminate your everyday work clothing. They also prevent you from carrying asbestos away from the worksite.
- Hoods. Employees that wear glasses should ask for a full-face respirator or hood to ensure a proper seal around the eyes, nose and mouth. Ordinary respirators may not seal properly when the worker wears eyeglasses.
- Miscellaneous protection. Depending on the nature of your job, you may also need disposable gloves, face coverings and shoe covers for maximum protection.
If your employer fails to protect you from exposure and you become ill, you may have legal options to recover compensation. Learning more about workplace asbestos requirements can help you find the right solution.