Worker Safety and Health in Wildfire Regions
Updated 02/18/2021 - List of Vendors who Report Available Supplies of N95 Disposable Respirators
To assist employers in identifying available supply, Cal/OSHA is maintaining a list of vendors who have represented they have at least 100,000 NIOSH-certified disposable N95 respirators in stock and available for delivery.
Wildfire smoke and cleanup presents hazards that employers and workers in affected regions must understand. Smoke from wildfires contains chemicals, gases and fine particles that can harm health. Hazards continue even after fires have been extinguished and cleanup work begins. Proper protective equipment and training is required for worker safety in wildfire regions.
Power outages can also present electrical and other hazards for workers. Proper installation and use of generators can prevent electrocution hazards. Workers must also be aware of the potential of electrocution or being injured by moving parts of machinery and other equipment when power is restored. Workers can also face health hazards from power outages in unventilated areas when ventilation systems are not working.
Cal/OSHA has a regulation (section 5141.1) to protect employees exposed to wildfire smoke. The regulation requires the following:
- Identification of harmful exposures
- Training and instruction
- Control of harmful exposures
- Specific particulate sampling requirements if an employer opts to monitor employee exposure with a direct reading instrument
Cal/OSHA encourages employers and workers to review the following pages with information and resources on protecting workers exposed to smoke from wildfires and worker safety during cleanup:
- Frequently Asked Questions about Wildfire Hazards
- Frequently Asked Questions on laws enforced by the Labor Commissioner’s Office
- Protecting Outdoor Workers Exposed to Smoke from Wildfires
- Important Update: Protection from Wildfire Smoke
- N95 Mask Commonly Asked Questions
- Using Disposable Respirators (in English and Spanish)
- Protecting Indoor Workplaces from Wildfire Smoke with Building Ventilation Systems
- Protecting Workers When there are Power Outages
- Worker Safety and Health During Fire Cleanup
- Respiratory Protection During Fire Cleanup
- Personal Protective Equipment During Fire Cleanup
- General Contractor and Subcontractor Duties
- Safety and Health of Workers Rebuilding after Wildfires