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Definition - What does HAZMAT Suit mean?

A hazmat suit is an article of personal protective equipment (PPE) that includes an impermeable garment and other equipment that are specially designed to protect the wearer from hazardous substances and materials, chemicals, biological and radioactive agents (not intended for warfare) during handling or in an environment where there is a possibility of presence of such materials. Hazmat suits are used by government and non-government service providers who need to work in an environment that contains hazardous material whether accidentally or as a routine matter.

Safeopedia explains HAZMAT Suit

Hazmat suits are designed according to the level of protection provided and the type of hazards. Hazmat suits are classified in four levels.

  • Level A - highest level protection against vapors, gases, mists and splashes includes garments, full-face mask with breathing apparatus, special boots and gloves
  • Level B - provides protection against splashes of hazardous chemical, but not vapor. It includes garments, full-face piece mask with breathing apparatus, special boots and gloves
  • Level C - provides protection against hazardous chemicals. It includes garments, respirator, boots and gloves. It protects against specific hazardous material, but is not usable in an oxygen deficient atmosphere. Not for chemical emergency
  • Level D - does not protect from chemical exposure. It is used where the wearer has no possibility of direct contact with chemicals. It includes a pair of coveralls with chemical-resistant footwear. Not for chemical emergency

In Europe, a similar system of types (1 to 6) is used:

  • Type 1 - protects against liquid and gaseous chemicals (Level A)
  • Type 2 - protects against liquid and gaseous chemicals (Level B)
  • Type 3 - protects against liquid chemicals for a limited period (Level C limited time)
  • Type 4 - protects against liquid chemicals spray for a limited period (Level C limited time)
  • Type 5 - protects against liquid chemicals (covers partial body) for a limited period (Level D)
  • Type 6 - protects parts of the body against liquid chemicals, such as gloves or boots only

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