ES&H Manual



6550 Appendix T1

Required Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

for Cryogen Work



1.0            Purpose


Specific personal protective equipment (PPE) is required when handling cryogens. This appendix describes how to determine the appropriate PPE, and how to obtain it.


2.0            Scope


This appendix applies only to PPE required to handle and dispense cryogens in amounts less than 50 gallons (190 liters).  Additional control measures, up to and including a work control document, may be required for greater quantities or as otherwise indicated by a Task Hazard Analysis.


The process steps for this procedure are performed in coordination with ES&H Manual Chapter 6550 Cryogenic Safety Program.


3.0            Responsibilities

NOTE:           Management authority may be delegated at the discretion of the responsible manager.


3.1              Everyone Working with Cryogens

·         Wear required PPE while working with cryogens.

·         Inspect PPE for damage before use; dispose of unusable PPE in trash.

·         Obtain PPE supplies as needed.


3.2              Supervisor/Subcontracting Officer’s Technical Representative (SOTR)/Sponsor

·         Ensure availability of required PPE.

·         Authorize only specifically trained individuals to work with cryogens in excess of 50 gallons (190 liters).


4.0            Process Steps


The potential for serious injury to eyes, hands, skin, and body from even minimal contact with cryogens makes the following PPE necessary. 


4.1              Eye Protection


Eye protection is required when working with cryogenic gases and fluids. 

·         Wear goggles if using amounts less than 1-liter.

·         Wear a full face shield over goggles if any of the following exists:

o   Using amounts greater than 1-liter,

o   Pouring cryogens

o   Working with a wide-mouth dewar. 

·         Any exceptions to these requirements are to be specified in an approved OSP or TOSP.


NOTE:  A face shield by itself does not provide adequate splash protection. Goggles must be worn underneath. The only exception is a combination face shield/goggle unit. This can be obtained from Industrial Hygiene.


4.2              Hand Protection


Hand protection is required when working with cryogens. 

·         Wear cryogenic gloves – these are specifically made for handling cryogenic material.


NOTE:  Never wear clean room gloves which are absorbent (cotton) or porous (nylon) when handling cryogens; these gloves can worsen an injury.


4.3              Body Protection


Protective clothing is required when working with cryogens.

·         Always wear:

o   Long, cuffless, pants and

o   Closed-toed, leather or otherwise impervious, shoes.




·         When working with quantities greater than 1-liter and less than 190-liters, wear:

o   Boots; and

o   Cryogenic apron.


NOTE:  Never wear shorts.  Exposed skin is particularly susceptible to serious injury.


4.4              Obtaining PPE


Required PPE is available through Webstock, the stockroom, your supervisor, or Industrial Hygiene. (See ES&H Manual 6620 Appendix T1 Selecting, Acquiring, Training, and Caring for Personal Protective Equipment for further information.)


5.0            Revision Summary


Revision 1.2 – 02/17/16 – Updated 4.1 Eye Protection to clarify requirements regarding face shields per CATS action MOA-2014-11-02-03

Revision 1.1 – 03/19/15 – Updated Technical POC from Dana Arenius to Jonathan Creel

Revision 1.0 – 01/17/12 – Updated to reflect current laboratory operations











ES&H Division

Jonathan Creel





This document is controlled as an on line file.  It may be printed but the print copy is not a controlled document.  It is the user’s responsibility to ensure that the document is the same revision as the current on line file.  This copy was printed on 2/18/2016.