Single or 3 stage decontamination chambers are effective in preventing cross-contamination. Strict protocols are used when entering and exiting the decontamination chambers. Three-stage decontamination chambers consist of a clean room, shower/decontamination chamber, and an equipment room. Each chamber is separated from the other and the work area by specially designed airlocks.
The clean room is used to remove and store street clothes, don personal protective clothing, and respiratory protection before entering the work area. Workers then use the shower/decontamination room on their way out after leaving any contaminated clothing in the equipment room. From there the equipment room is the contaminated area where any contaminated work clothing such as boots, hardhats, goggles, and any other equipment is stored after proper HEPA and/or wet cleaning.
An important part of the decontamination chamber is a manometer which indicates pressure differential inside the work area compared to areas outside. This digital device indicates if proper negative pressure is current inside the work area.