Closed-Circuit Escape Respirators

A closed-circuit escape respirator (CCER) is an apparatus in which the wearer’s exhalation is rebreathed after the carbon dioxide in the exhaled breath has been effectively removed and a suitable oxygen supply has been restored from a source within the device (e.g., compressed, chemical, or liquid oxygen). CCERs are used in certain industrial and other work setting during emergencies to enable users to escape from atmospheres that can be immediately dangerous to life and health.

In the mining industry, CCERs are knowns as self-contained self-rescuers (SCSRs), and are used by miners to escape dangerous atmospheres in mines. Navy and Coast Guard personnel, working below decks on vessels, as well as the railroad industry, refer to the apparatus as an emergency escape breathing device.

Table of Approved Units under Subpart H, of January 15, 2016

Self-Contained Self-Rescuers
Approved under 42 CFR Part 84 Subpart H
Subpart H, SCSR Approvals as of January 13, 2016

Table of Approved Units under Subpart H, of January 15, 2016
Manufacturer Approval Number Model Rated Duration Interface Final Manufacture, Label, Sell Date*†
Ocenco, Inc. TC-13F-0386 M-20.2 10 Mouthpiece April 9, 2015
Ocenco, Inc. TC-13F-0269 M-20 10 Mouthpiece May 13, 2016
AVOX Systems, Inc. TC-13F-0088 15 Minute Emergency Escape Self-Contained Breathing Device 15 Hood May 13, 2016
Ocenco, Inc. TC-13F-0104 EBA6.5 60 Mouthpiece January 4, 2017
Dräger Safety AG & Co. KGaA TC-13F-0289 OXY K Plus 60 Mouthpiece January 4, 2017
Dräger Safety AG & Co. KGaA TC-13F-0289 OXY K Plus S 60 Mouthpiece January 4, 2017
Dräger Safety AG & Co. KGaA TC-13F-0644 Oxy 6000 60 Minute Self-Contained Self Rescuer 60 Mouthpiece January 4, 2017
CSE Corp. TC-13F-0645 SRLD 60 Minute Self-Contained Self Rescuer 60 Mouthpiece January 4, 2017

* All Subpart H models identified in the table may continue to be deployed as approved respirators until they exceed the requirements for their approved service lives.
† NIOSH does not intend to revoke any certificate of approval for any escape respirator approved for use in mining in accordance with NIOSH regulations, that are manufactured, labeled, or sold prior to June 1, 2019, provided that there is no cause for revocation under existing NIOSH regulation.

Final Rule – August 12, 2015

Federal Register Notice: Closed-Circuit Escape Respirators; Extension of Transition Period Final Rule – August 12, 2015External

Standard for Closed-Circuit Escape Respirator

Approved Tests and Standards for Closed-Circuit Escape Respirators, March 8, 2012Cdc-pdf

Announcement of an Opportunity for Manufacturers and Designers of Closed-Circuit Escape Respirators To Participate in Performance Testing Within a Correlation Test Program Offered by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, May 5, 2012External

Rules, Standards, and Table of Units Approved Under 42 CFR Part 84 Subpart H as of January 15, 2016

Summary Closed-Circuit Escape Respirator Standard Final Rule, August 12, 2015

This final rule amends 42 CFR 84.301 to allow NIOSH to extend the original three year period for continued manufacturing, labeling, and sale of CCERs approved under Subpart H to allow for the orderly implementation of the new testing and certification requirements of Subpart O. This provision allows NIOSH to extend the original transition period to allow manufacturers to obtain NIOSH approval, establish production capacity, and complete the modification of existing CCER designs, if necessary, or develop new designs that comply with the new testing and certification requirements.

An extension also ensures that a constant supply of approved CCERs will remain available for purchase. The new Subpart O standard will continue to be applied to all new CCER designs that are submitted for approval. In accordance with this final rule, all types of CCERs approved under Subpart H that were manufactured and labeled as NIOSH-approved, and sold by April 9, 2015, and including those units manufactured and labeled as NIOSH-approved and sold during the extended periods established by this rule, may continue to be used as NIOSH-approved respirators until the end of their service life.

The deadline for Subpart O compliance is extended until 1 year after the date on which NIOSH approves the first CCER in each of the following three categories, described in 42 CFR 84.304:

  • Cap 1 mining
  • Cap 3 mining
  • Cap 3 non-mining

Approval TC-13G-003 was issued to Avon Protection Systems. Inc. on May 13, 2015, for a Cap 1 unit for use in mining applications. The Avon approval triggered a six month transition for the category of Cap 1 mining respirators, in accordance with the language of the interim final rule. With the publication of this final rule, that extension is continued for an additional six months, until May 13, 2016.

The entire rule can be viewed as a Federal Register NoticeExternal.

Extension of Transition Period Notice, January 29, 2015

In March 2012, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) published a final rule establishing new standards for the certification of closed-circuit escape respirators. The new standards were designed to take effect over a three year transition period. HHS has determined that extending the concluding date for the transition is necessary to allow sufficient time for respirator manufacturers to meet the demands of the mining, maritime, railroad, and other industries. Pursuant to this interim final rule, NIOSH will extend the phase-in period until six months after the date that the first approval is granted to Cap 1 Mining, Cap 3 Mining, and Cap 3 Non-Mining units. This rule is effective on January 29, 2015.

Interested persons or organizations are invited to participate in this rulemaking by submitting written views, arguments, recommendations, and data. All comments must be submitted by March 30, 2015. Comments are invited on any topic related to this rulemaking. HHS invites comments specifically on the following question related to this rulemaking:

Will a compliance date six months after the date that the first approval is granted in each of three categories of CCER types provide sufficient time for respirator manufacturers to develop production capacity to meet expected market demand, while not causing undue loss of sales revenue that may be expected from achieving the first successful design for the given size?

Federal Register Notice: Closed-Circuit Escape Respirators; Extension of Transition PeriodCdc-pdfExternal [PDF – 246 KB]

Page last reviewed: February 22, 2018