Types of Personal Protective Equipment
Personal Protective Equipment, or PPE, is essential in keeping workers safe on the job. The kind of equipment needed depends on the type of industry and the job site itself. Here is an overview of different types of Personal Protective Equipment.
Head – Hard hats protect workers from falling debris and electrical hazards. For protection from cold weather, there are hard hat liners that attach inside the hard hat with Velcro that protect your neck from the cold. There are also full-face tube liners, balaclavas, and foot and hand warmers. Also available are high-visibility jackets, vests, sweatshirts, and hoodies that can keep workers warm and safe while working.
Eyes and Face – Debris can harm the eyes and face during activities like welding, cutting, milling, sawing, grinding, or working with chemicals and gases. Safety glasses protect against flying objects and splash goggles are used to protect against chemical splashes. Face shields are used for protection from flying debris and splashes.
Hands – For hand protection, wear gloves that are designed for the job, like welding gloves for welding or insulated gloves for electrical hazards. Other hazards that hands need protection from include: abrasions, chemicals, cuts, punctures, and temperature extremes.
Feet – Certain footwear is designed to protect against slipping for workplaces that may have slick floors. Some shoes have soles that are resistant to punctures and some have steel toes to protect the feet from heavy equipment.
Hearing – If a worker is exposed to noise higher than 85 dBA for eight hours, hearing protection is needed. These include single-use earplugs, molded earplugs, or earmuffs.
Respiratory – When there are hazards in the air, a respirator is needed. They can cover the mouth and nose, cover the whole face, or fit loosely over the entire head. One type of respirator cleanses the air of impurities and the other provides clean air from another source.
Whole Body – This category includes harnesses to protect the wearer from falling. Other protective clothing includes full body suits, lab coats, vests, jackets, or aprons.