Before you begin the clean-up process be sure that you have the right safety equipment or professional help to be protected from the debris, possible contamination, and other negative consequences. Some of the concerns may be exposure to:

  • Floodwater
  • Electrical hazards
  • Contaminated water and food
  • Rodents, insects and reptiles
  • Pesticides
  • Chemicals
  • Oil spills
  • Mold
  • Asbestos
  • Carbon monoxide

Some of these will require professional handling and/or machinery. You can get professional advice on how to handle these post hurricane effects from either the EPA or CDC web sites.

United States Environmental Protection Agency

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Respiratory Protection

For any exposure to airborne substances you will need the appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). After getting professional advice on what equipment to use, depending on the hazard, you may need a disposable respirator for oil or non-oil particulates or you may need a reusable mask with the appropriate cartridges and/or filters for gases and vapors.

  • Moldex N95, N99, and N100 disposable respirators provide a filter efficiency stated in their category (95%, 99%, 100%). These are NOT resistant to oil contained particulates in the air.
  • Moldex R95, P95 and P100 disposable respirators are resistant to oil, but have a limited service life of 8 continuous hours or until a 200 mg loading per respirator.
  • All respirators must be properly fitted and used. Refer to OSHA 29CFR1910.134.
  • All gases and vapors require a reusable mask that may be either a half-face or full face, depending on the hazard present and concentration. The appropriate mask and cartridges/filters must be used.

Disposable Respirators

Reusable Respirators

Hearing Protection

For loud noises that may be a result of clean-up machinery or equipment, proper hearing protection may be needed. Sound meter applications are available for free download to your cell phone and can help assess the noise levels but are not 100% accurate (when in doubt it’s always a good idea to protect your hearing). OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) recommends that hearing protection be used whenever noise levels exceed the 85 decibel Action Level. Moldex has a variety of hearing protection products available to the public:

  • Disposable foam earplugs (up to NRR 33dB)
  • Reusable earplugs (Up to NRR 27dB)
  • Bands (Up to NRR 25dB)
  • Earmuffs (Up to NRR 30dB)

Hearing Protection Products

Related Links


WARNING: The information contained in this Tech Brief is dated and was accurate to the best of Moldex’s knowledge, on the date above. It is not meant to be comprehensive, nor is it intended to be used in place of the warning/use instructions that accompany Moldex respirators. Outside of the USA, check with all applicable and local government regulations.

©2020 Moldex-Metric, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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