What is Personal Protective Equipment?
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) refers to clothing or equipment designed to protect the wearer from injury or infection by minimizing exposure to potentially hazardous workplace conditions. There are many different types of PPE available to protect against a wide range of workplace hazards and includes items such as gloves, hard hats, safety vests, respirators and masks, safety shoes, coveralls and high-visibility clothing.
Depending on the type of work and work setting, injury or illnesses may result from exposure to:
- Extreme Hot or Cold Temperatures
- Bodily Fluids (Bacteria, Viruses)
PPE is the first line of defense against workplace injury, but in order to ensure the utmost level of effectiveness, there are several things that need to be taken into consideration and practiced regularly.
All personal protective equipment should:
- Be maintained for cleanliness and reliability
- Be made with quality materials and sound construction
- Fit properly and comfortably
Employers must provide their workers with the required PPE and ensure its proper use through initial and on-going employee training and the implementation of a PPE program.
Types of Personal Protective Equipment
Eye and Face Protection Potential Hazards: chemical splash, dust, projectiles, gas and vapor, radiation, bodily fluids PPE Options: safety glasses, safety goggles, face masks, full face shields, eye shields, visors
Head and Neck Protection Potential Hazards: impact from falling or flying objects, risk of bumping head, hair getting tangled in machinery, chemical drips or splash, climate or extreme temperatures PPE Options: safety helmets, hairnets, high-visibility hot and cold weather hats, bouffant caps, disposable hood covers, high-visibility hard hats, fire retardant beanie hats, high-visibility head wraps, cooling neck shields
Hand and Arm Protection Potential Hazards: abrasion, exposure to extreme temperatures, cuts, punctures, chemicals, electric shock, biological agents, vibration PPE Options: medical exam gloves, cold weather insulated gloves, coated chemical handling gloves, high-visibility gloves, gloves with a cuff, arm sleeves/arm-length disposable gloves, anti-vibration gloves, Kevlar gloves/sleeves, high-temperature gloves, cotton knit gloves
Foot Protection Potential Hazards: cuts and punctures, slipping, falling objects, chemical splash, vehicles, extreme hot, cold and wet conditions PPE Options: rubber work boots, steel toe boots, insulated boots, boot covers, traction spikes, rubber overshoes, feet warmers
Full Body Protection Potential Hazards: extreme temperatures (hot and cold), fire, chemical or metal splash, impact or crushing due to poor visibility PPE Options: conventional or disposable coveralls, flame-retardant suits, chemical suits, full-body protective suits, aprons, high-visibility cold weather clothing, high-visibility hot weather clothing, safety reflective wear
Respiratory Protection Potential Hazards: dust, particles, chemical gases and vapors, oxygen-deficient working conditions PPE Options: particulate respirators, full and half face masks
About Sara Glove: For over 40 years, Sara Glove has been providing quality personal protective equipment and workplace safety products at wholesale prices for a number of businesses across a range of industries. To learn more about Sara Glove or to connect with us, please visit us at www.saraglove.com.