Personal Protective Equipment

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Personal protective equipment (PPE) is a very important and integral part of any safety and health system. Personal protective equipment is used in many industries and it’s very common for workers wear more than one type of PPE to protect against different hazards in the workplace. PPE should always be comfortable for the user, compatible with their body type, and effective when protecting them from the hazards.

PPE is not always the first step to take when preparing or improving a safety and health program. OSHA always recommends that companies should try and use engineering or administrative controls to help eliminate potential hazards to workers. When we use engineering controls we are trying to eliminate the hazard at the source by modifying the system. When we use administrative controls we focus on following formalized practices and standards. When these engineering and administrative controls don’t provide enough protection that’s when the employers provide the employees with the proper PPE.

Selecting the proper PPE can be somewhat of a hassle. Employers can look at OSHA regulations that will list what PPE is recommended for that certain project. Employers can also look on the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) website to see what recommendations they have. Pre-planning is also important, doing site inspection and task analysis of the workplace conditions can help greatly when selecting what proper PPE to use for those tasks. Also involving the workers when selecting the PPE is a good idea, because if the employees aren’t comfortable wearing it or it alters the way they work they might not like to wear it. Once the PPE Is established each employee needs to be trained on how to properly use the PPE, and at the minimum they must know when and how to use the PPE. After the PPE has been used in the workplace it is a good idea to evaluate how effective the PPE was.

Manufacturing companies offer all different types...
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