Chicago Police DepartmentUniform and Property U04-03
Respirator Program
Issue Date:20 April 2012Effective Date:20 April 2012
Index Category:Uniform and Equipment Specifications
This directive describes policy and procedure relative to the issuance and annual requirements of Department-issued respirators.
  • A.Respirator - a personal safety device designed to protect the wearer from inhaling harmful dusts, fumes, vapors, and/or gases.
  • B.Filter - a device which removes select solid particulates from the air. The type of filter used is based upon the hazard present at the scene, i.e., CN/CS (the smaller canister) for riot control agents and tear gases and CBRN (the larger cannister) for chemical warfare agents and select toxic chemicals).
  • A.The Department designates units and select members within units to be trained and issued respirators.
  • B.Department members issued a respirator will have the respirator readily available.
  • C.Upon notification by the First Deputy Superintendent or other appropriate authority, Department members issued a respirator will carry the respirator on their person.
  • D.Respirators will be worn in a manner consistent with training when any incident makes wearing the respirator necessary.
    The respirator does not provide protection against smoke inhalation and is NOT to be used when entering a burning building or in any other fire situation.
  • A.Members designated to be trained will:
    • 1.complete the OSHA Respirator Medical Evaluation Questionnaire which can be found on the Education and Training Division website, and
    • 2.submit the medical evaluation form to the Medical Section.
  • B.The Medical Section personnel will review the form, either approve or deny the issuance of a respirator, and notify the member and the Education and Training Division of their decision.
  • C.If a member is not medically cleared by the Department to use a respirator, that member may seek a medical clearance from his or her personal physician and subsequently provide written documentation to the Medical Section.
    If a member obtains medical clearance, but is in any way physically impaired at the time that he or she is required to use the respirator, the commanding officer/unit commander or the member's immediate field supervisor must be made aware and may make the decision to withhold the member's participation. The Medical Section physician is available to consult with the member's supervisor if needed.
  • D.Respirator issuance, fit testing, and training will be announced by the Education and Training Division for those members who have recently received medical clearance.
  • A.The Deputy Chief, Education and Training Division, will:
    • 1.maintain a coordinator for the Respirator Program.
    • 2.establish a unit within the Education and Training Division with the following responsibilities:
      • a.maintain a list of all Department members issued a respirator.
      • b.schedule the issuance and fit of respirators for members who have recently received medical clearance.
      • c.schedule and coordinate all annual fit testing for respirators.
      • d.will provide updated respirator information/training tools via the Education and Training Division website.
      • e.ensure that the complete list of members who did not meet qualifications for respirators is forwarded to the Inspections Division.
      • f.ensure that an adequate amount of respirator cleaning products are maintained and available for members issued a respirator.
      • g.maintain an updated respirator information page on the Education and Training Division's website.
  • B.The Commander, Inspections Division, will:
    • responsible for maintaining a list of all qualified personnel,
    • 2.ensure that all members issued a respirator attend fit testing.
    • 3.ensure that any respirator, in the possession of a member who is not authorized to use it due to a lack of medical clearance, is returned to the Education and Training Division.
  • C.Unit commanding officers will:
    • 1.ensure members issued a respirator are fit-tested annually.
    • 2.ensure that the serial number for each respirator issued to a Department member is entered into the watch application of the CLEAR system.
    • 3.maintain a list of unit personnel issued a respirator.
  • D.Department members issued a respirator will:
    • fit-tested annually in the manner determined by the Education and Training Division Deputy Chief.
      If a member did not have their respirator fit tested during the previous year, that member will refrain from deploying with the respirator until a successful fit test is completed.
    • 2.ensure that he or she review the updated respirator information/training tools via the Education and Training website.
    • 3.have the respirator readily available and will produce it upon request.
    • 4.notify the unit commanding officer and the Medical Section of any changes in his or her medical condition that would affect the use of a respirator, such as asthma or corrected vision.
      Members issued a respirator will not have any facial hair beyond a Department-approved mustache, as facial hair will interfere with the respirator's ability to properly seal on the member's face.
Garry F. McCarthy
Superintendent of Police
12-039 SB