Saf Health Work.  2018 Mar;9(1):95-100. 10.1016/j.shaw.2017.05.003.

Evaluation of Respiratory Protection Program in Petrochemical Industries: Application of Analytic Hierarchy Process

Affiliations
  • 1Student Research Committee, School of Health, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Islamic Republic of Iran.
  • 2Research Center for Health Science, Institute of Health, Department of Occupational Health, School of Health, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Islamic Republic of Iran. Jahangiri_m@sums.ac.ir
  • 3Research Center for Health Science, Institute of Health, Department of Epidemiology, School of Health, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Islamic Republic of Iran.
  • 4Health, Safety and Environment Department, National Iranian Petrochemical Company, Islamic Republic of Iran.
  • 5Faculty member of Department of Management, Zand Higher Education Institute Iran, Shiraz, Iran.
  • 6Department of Occupational Health, School of Health, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Islamic Republic of Iran.

Abstract

BACKGROUND
Respiratory protection equipment (RPE) is the last resort to control exposure to workplace air pollutants. A comprehensive respiratory protection program (RPP) ensures that RPE is selected, used, and cared properly. Therefore, RPP must be well integrated into the occupational health and safety requirements. In this study, we evaluated the implementation of RPP in Iranian petrochemical industries to identify the required solutions to improve the current status of respiratory protection.
METHODS
This cross-sectional study was conducted among 24 petrochemical industries in Iran. The survey instrument was a checklist extracted from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration respiratory protection standard. An index, Respiratory Protection Program Index (RPPI), was developed and weighted by analytic hierarchy process to determine the compliance rate (CR) of provided respiratory protection measures with the RPP standard. Data analysis was performed using Excel 2010.
RESULTS
The most important element of RPP, according to experts, was respiratory hazard evaluation. The average value of RPPI in the petrochemical plants was 49 ± 15%. The highest and lowest of CR among RPP elements were RPE selection and medical evaluation, respectively.
CONCLUSION
None of studied petrochemical industries implemented RPP completely. This can lead to employees' overexposure to hazardous workplace air contaminants. Increasing awareness of employees and employers through training is suggested by this study to improve such conditions.

Keyword

analytic hierarchy process; petrochemical industries; respiratory protection program
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