Stressing the Importance of Wearing Your PPE
When deadlines loom and pressure is high, it can be easy to slip on your safety standards. However, failing to wear your personal protective equipment (PPE) correctly just once can result in a serious or even fatal injury.
June is National Safety Month, making it a great time to refresh your knowledge of PPE use and to recommit to proper safety protocols. Here are several common types of PPE and why they’re important to your work and your health:
1. Head Protection
Hard hats, hoods and similar head protection help workers avoid injuries from falling objects or debris. Hard hats are a common sight on construction sites, where workers rely on them to help prevent or reduce the risk of concussions and similar head trauma.
Make sure your hard hat fits correctly and is free of cracks, cuts, and other obvious damage. Also, check the age of your hard hat and replace it with a newer model when necessary.
2. Eye, Ear, and Face Protection
The face is one of the most delicate areas of the body, and it’s also one we rely on heavily. Protecting your eyes and face with safety goggles, face shields, earplugs, and similar tools can help ensure your sight, hearing and similar senses are preserved.
While many jobs require eye and ear protection, even workers who aren’t required by law to wear safety goggles often find them beneficial, especially on construction sites and in other areas where debris may be present.
3. Breathing Protection
Respiratory protection is a must at any job site in which toxic substances may enter the air. Many of these substances can’t be seen, smelled or felt, which means that you may not know you’ve suffered injury or illness from them until it is too late.
Respirators and similar equipment are necessary and important in any workplace with air contaminants like dust, fumes, paint spray, and chemicals.
4. Hand and Skin Protection
Construction, manufacturing and skilled trades workers rely heavily on their hands. Your hands are the most effective tools you have, and they’re a common site of injury in the workplace.
Hand injuries and skin conditions, like lacerations and dermatitis, can often be reduced or prevented with the proper protection. Using the correct type of gloves for your work is a must.
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