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Save Your Breath

CHERYL TEVIS 02/12/2013 @ 11:31am

Lowell Forristall is no stranger to the uncomfortable, and potentially chronic repercussions of agricultural airway hazards. After an incident or two, the Carson, Iowa, farmer began wearing a respirator.

“I was sick for three days after cleaning a soybean bin,” he says. “I also have some lung scarring from handling corn.”

A growing number of farmers today wear personal protective equipment. However, Carolyn Sheridan, AgriSafe Network clinical director and Spencer (Iowa) Hospital AgriSafe director, still fields a lot of questions about how to care, store, and replace respirators and masks.

The two types of two-strap particulate respirators/masks (Figures 1 and 2) are disposable. Figure 2 has an exhalation valve, designed to help reduce moisture buildup, an issue if you wear glasses.

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