Dry Particulates

What is a Dry Particulate?

In matters of employee safety, the term “dry particulates” refers to solid particles that pose risk to individuals if they were to be inhaled.

Simple illustration of asbestos particles lodged within a human pair of lungs
Generic illustration of a mold spore
Simple icon of fiberglass and its internal structure
Icon of a large cloud dust with smaller particles being emitted from the mass
Icon illustration of an airborne substance being sprayed from an aerosol can

Dry particulates range in size and severity of the hazard based on the substance being handled, which could include materials such as asbestos, mold, fiberglass, dust, aerosols, and more.

Are Dry Particulates Hazardous?

Dry particulates can pose immediate risk if inhaled, or the effects can accumulate based on the amount of exposure over a certain period of time. For example, inhaling asbestos fibers has been shown to increase risk of cancer, asbestosis, mesothelioma, and pleural disease.

Some dry particulates can also pose a hazard if they make contact with the skin. Fiberglass insulation and mold spores can cause skin irritation and other allergic reactions. If these dry particulates remain on your clothing, they can be transferred to your vehicle, home, and other environments where more vulnerable individuals risk contact.

Worker emerging from an industrial cellar dons Lakeland's MicroMax coveralls

Protective Clothing for Dry Particulates

When selecting PPE for dry particulate protection, it’s important to consider the nature of the substance. If respiratory protection is required, make sure you choose the proper respirator or mask to prevent inhalation.

Protective clothing, such as disposable coveralls, should offer a respirator-fit hood if respiratory protection is required to provide greater security around the face and neck. Look for coveralls that offer a high Moisture Vapor Transmission Rate for added comfort during the workday.

Protect Your People From Dry Particulates

Dry Particulates FAQ

  • Do I need PPE when handling fiberglass insulation?

    Do I need PPE when handling fiberglass insulation?

    When fiberglass is altered in any way (cut, chopped, sanded, or sawed) the dust produced could land on a worker’s skin. When installing fiberglass insulation, contact with the material could result in uncomfortable rashes, or worse, the fibers becoming embedded in the outer layer of skin. Learn more about PPE for fiberglass insulation here.
  • Which disposable coveralls are best?

    Which disposable coveralls are best?

    Choosing the right disposable coverall depends greatly on your application. The substance or material you’re working with, OSHA recommendations, and other factors impact which coverall you should select. For help choosing the best disposable coverall for your work environment, speak with a Lakeland specialist.
  • What is soda blasting?

    What is soda blasting?

    One of the processes for mold remediation is soda blasting (baking soda). Soda blasting increases the risk of mold spore intrusion, and it is effective to also tape above and all the way down the zipper line to block intrusion points. PPE with a storm flap over the zipper makes this easier as it blocks particulates from breaching through the zipper. Learn more about mold remediation here.
  • What is asbestos abatement?

    What is asbestos abatement?

    Asbestos abatement is the process of removing or encapsulating asbestos so that it no longer poses a risk to the inhabitants of a structure. You can read more about asbestos abatement and remediation, as well as PPE recommendations, in this article.
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