Safety clothing and equipment is crucial in some workplaces to help keep people protected from certain hazards. It is the responsibility of the employers and workers to ensure that they use the correct safety clothing and equipment while working.
Apart from the protection that PPEs offer, they also help companies reduce the risks of getting into trouble with the law. Some workplaces are legally mandated to have PPEs. Given the pressure that comes with owning personal protection equipment, the process of choosing the right one can be very challenging. Below are some factors to consider.
Assess and Understand the Environment
The most important step is assessing the hazards around the workplace so as to decide what the right PPE is. You need to be open-minded and understand the effects of each hazard. This process needs the collaboration of different people as this will make it easier to identify these hazards and decide on the right safety clothing and equipment to get for the company staff. It is important to include an independent contributor who doesn’t work in the company so that he or she can provide an unbiased solution.
Know the Right Gear
Before approaching a manufacturer such as Engelbert Strauss to get the PPE, you should be sure of what you need. The gear that a person operating a chemical plant needs differs from that of a construction worker. Hazard assessment will help you determine the kind of PPE you need according to the risks involved. After determining the threats that workers are faced with in their day-to-day activities, you will be in a position to get them the right gear. Some of these threats include impact injuries, sharp objects, extreme temperatures, biological threats, dust and radiation. When picking the PPE, do so while keeping in mind the risks you identified during the assessment phase.
Once you have picked out the right gear and equipment, the next step should be to train your employees on how to use it. Training begins with the employer making sure that his workers understand what kind of safety clothing and equipment they need and when they require it. The process should include how to put on, remove and adjust the gear and equipment. It is the perfect time to confirm the sizes. The right size is normally determined by the type of the job, size of the wearer and whether there is a need for the employee to wear more protective clothes under the gear. Wearing the gear is not enough. Your workers should simulate their work activities to see how well it fits, which should be perfect. It should not fit too loose or snugly.
Training should also include the PPE limitation, useful life, maintenance and care and disposal. For example, those working in chemical processing plants should be trained on the proper method to safely dispose of the PPE. This is because exposed clothing is also a hazard.
Go for Quality and Durability
The material and design type of the safety clothing will determine its durability. If you buy a helmet that has been made from the cheapest plastic, it will not serve you for more than a couple of weeks. Go for gear that will serve the worker for a long time. Some of these PPEs come with information tags, detailing how long they can last. Do not forget that their durability will be affected by the environment where they get used. Go through the warranty that the manufacturer offers to determine the issues it covers.
As for quality, never compromise it for a lower price tag. Always go for the highest quality and choose products that have met the specified standards. For example, getting your workers footwear made from a cheap material will not prevent the risk of static discharge, which can cause injuries. Ensure the manufacturer has used the finest material and quality build for safety clothing and equipment.
If you follow the above steps, you will keep all your workers protected and make the workplace safe.