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The Importance of Atmospheric Testing / Air Monitoring

Atmospheric conditions must be tested before hot work begins, and monitored throughout the shift. Atmospheric testing is required for two distinct purposes. The first is to evaluate hazards, and the second is to verify acceptable conditions exist.

Before operating a multi-gas meter, check the calibration certificate or sticker to ensure that a gas calibration has been done within the last month. If not, one should be performed. Always test the meter before using it to ensure it is reading correctly.

Acceptable atmospheric conditions are: Oxygen content between 19.5 and 23.5%; combustible gasses less than 10% of the LEL, lower explosive limit; and toxic gasses, such as Carbon Monoxide (CO), below their PEL, permissible exposure limit.

If unsafe conditions are detected, stop work immediately.


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