Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Requirements
No matter the job, personal protective equipment (PPE) can provide vital protection against the hazards of specific job or task. For one Atlanta based company, not assessing the hazards and providing the necessary protective equipment led to a OSHA citation with a hefty fine of $211,400.
Where did the company go wrong?
OSHA launched an investigation after hot steam burned an employee trying to repair a leak on a steam-line header. During the investigation, OSHA determined the header had been leaking for several months. OSHA found the company violated several federal safety standards including PPE. The company didn’t assess the hazards present on the job site. Additionally, they did not select and require the use of protective equipment such as eye and hand protection. So, let’s review the requirements.
What are companies required to do?
Under the CFR 1910.132, the employer must assess the workplace to determine what, if any, hazards are present or could be present. Based on these findings, the employer needs to identify the necessary PPE to protect workers and have each employee use the protection. The employer must also provide training to workers required to wear any protective equipment.
What must the training include?
- When personal protective equipment is necessary
- What kind of PPE is needed
- How to out in on, adjust, wear and take off the PPE properly
- The limitations of the PPE
- How to care, maintain and dispose of the protective equipment
When must PPE be worn?
According to CFR 1910.132, PPE must be provided used and maintained wherever and whenever needed based on the hazards caused by processes or the environment.
The value of PPE
Protecting workers should be an absolute priority. By assessing the hazards, providing the appropriate personal protective equipment and training workers on how to use it, many accidents can be prevented. No matter the hazard, there is a protective measure to keep workers safe. Thousands of hours of research and development have resulted in engineered systems and devices to protect workers and reduce the likelihood for an accident. By following the standards, you not only protect your workers but can protect yourself and your company from OSHA Citations and potential liability.
If you would like assistance in assessing your workplace for hazards, determining the right protections or training workers, contact us today. You can visit our resources page for safety meeting PDFs on a variety of topics including PPE recommendations and requirements to share with your workers and crews.