By Vickie Holland
Ask any employee and they will know that wearing gloves is the first line of protection in worker safety. But does everyone know that employee safety involves more than just wearing gloves? Wearing the proper equipment minimizes exposure to hazards that cause serious workplace injuries and illnesses. Employers are also required to train each worker who is required to use personal protective equipment (commonly referred to as “PPE”) to know:
- When it is necessary
- What kind is necessary
- How to properly put it on, adjust it, wear it and take it off
- The limitations of the equipment
- Proper care, maintenance, useful life, and disposal of the equipment
All PPE should be comfortable to wear to encourage employee use. It should be safely designed, clean and well maintained. Here are 6 points of PPE that are designed to limit injury exposure to your employees.
- FACE PROTECTION
Goggles should always be worn, and workers should also consider face shields. This is true if working near stored chemicals, large mechanical equipment, mixing cleaning chemicals or similar hazards.
- HEARING PROTECTION
Hearing loss is becoming one of the most common occupational health hazards in a variety of industries, including professional cleaning. OSHA requires ear plugs/coverings to be worn if workers are exposed to “average” decibel exposure (about 85 decibels) for eight hours or longer.
- PROPER HAND PROTECTION
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), each year more than a million workers visit emergency rooms due to hand injuries. Of these workers, 70 percent weren’t wearing gloves or were not wearing the right glove. We can help workers select the proper hand protection for a variety of cleaning tasks.
- BACK SUPPORT
An estimated 20 percent of all workplace injuries are injuries to the back. Different types of back belts are available to address this problem. Studies indicate that installing posters advising workers on how to work without harming their backs can be very effective.
- FOOT PROTECTION
Many cleaning workers go to work without giving a second thought to the shoes they wear. This often leads to an accident. Work shoes and protective overshoes are available to protect workers from slipping, falling objects, even electrocution.
- BODY PROTECTION
The main purpose of wearing PPE for the body is protection from chemicals, heat, sparks, infectious material or other hazardous substances during work activities. Wearing the proper protection will reduce injuries and keep employees safe. Rips, tears or other defects should be reported to the supervisor immediately and not worn by employee.
For more information on PPE ask your Imperial Dade Sales Consultant or visit us at www.ImperialDade.com for a location near you.