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Control measure

Personal protective equipment (PPE): Biological agents

Control measure knowledge

This control measure should be read in conjunction with Personal protective equipment (PPE): Hazardous materials.

Biological agents may enter the body via any of the known routes (see National Operational Guidance: Hazardous materials – section on routes of entry in Tier 1 guidance). Any personal protective equipment (PPE) that can prevent entry will provide sufficient protection. In the absence of specialist advice, PPE should provide respiratory protection and an impervious layer that can be decontaminated (see Control measure – Decontamination for biological agents) or disposed of, as a minimum.

Strategic actions

Fire and rescue services should:
  • Provide appropriate levels of respiratory protective equipment (RPE) that gives respiratory protection, such as breathing apparatus (BA) or a powered respirator protective suit

  • Provide appropriate levels of respiratory protective equipment (RPE) that gives respiratory protection, such as breathing apparatus (BA) or a powered respirator protective suit

Tactical actions

Incident commanders should:
  • Ensure that all personnel wear the level of PPE identified by service risk assessments, procedures and training for biological agents

  • Ensure all crews don PPE appropriate to the hazard if it is determined that an entry to the risk area is required (for example, to perform life saving actions)