NIOSH Respirators User Notice
Issue Date: July 29, 2011
From: Heinz Ahlers, Chief, Technology Evaluation Branch, National Personal Protective Technology Laboratory
Subject: Update of the NIOSH and MSHA Collection and Testing of the CSE SR-100
On October 4, 2010, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) started collecting CSE SR-100s in order to evaluate operation of the starter oxygen system. The agencies determined that a sample of 500 units from the deployed population would be needed to make a statistically sound evaluation of that population. On June 14, 2011, the sample collection and testing was completed.
With five (5) failures observed, the Limiting Quality level of insufficient starter oxygen in the approximately 70,000 deployed SR-100s is greater than 1.25% and less than 2% using American National Standards Institute Q3-1988. NIOSH considers this failure rate unacceptable for long-term deployment. MSHA and NIOSH are evaluating a plan proposed by CSE for orderly phase out of the SR-100s.
Mine operators and miners are again reminded that they should immediately obtain another SCSR if they encounter any difficulty with the operation of an SCSR. Operators should provide training to ensure that miners know what to do should their SCSR fail to activate. All miners should always have ready access to a spare SCSR in case the first one they try to activate fails for any reason.