The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) tests and certifies respirators in accordance with the regulatory requirements of Title 42 Code of Federal Regulation (CFR) Part 84. This regulation identifies a wide range of specific respirator types in Subparts H thru L. This regulation also allows other types of respirators not specifically listed in 42 CFR Part 84, to be tested and certified by NIOSH if specific test requirements can be identified and developed. Self-contained self-rescuer (SCSR) devices are not listed as a specific respirator type in 42 CFR Part 84. However, NIOSH has developed specific certification requirements for SCSRs by adapting self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) performance requirements listed in Subpart H with additional requirements unique to self-contained self-rescuer (SCSR) devices. NIOSH has approved both compressed-oxygen SCSRs and those that generate oxygen from a chemical bed. The NIOSH respirator certification process includes hardware evaluation and testing, as well as a review of the manufacturer's quality assurance program, engineering drawings and quality assurance documentation, user instructions, approval labels, and packaging. NIOSH also requires a Service Life Plan (SLP) for each SCSR model which identifies a finite time period from date of manufacture until the SCSR must be removed from service and discarded. The NIOSH performance requirements include both laboratory bench tests and functional testing which requires human test subjects to open, don, and wear the SCSR while performing specific exercises. These exercise tests are commonly referred to as "man-tests".
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