Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is meant to protect employees from hazards at work. There is a wide variety of PPE out there. The type of PPE needed will vary based on the type of work environment.

Personal Protective Equipment: Things to Know

Employer Responsibilities

Employers should look for workplace hazards and identify the types of Personal Protective Equipment that is needed. They should provide employees with the appropriate PPE needed. Also, employers need to train their workers on how to correctly use this PPE. The employer is responsible for maintaining the PPE. They must also replace it if it ever gets damaged or worn out.

Employee Responsibilities

Employees need to make sure they are wearing their Personal Protective Equipment. They also need to attend the training sessions for proper usage of their PPE. It is also important for an employee to care for, clean and maintain their PPE. They should let employers know if their PPE is in need of repair or replacement.

Types of PPE

Personal Protective Equipment comes in a wide range of types and styles. Some examples include gloves, gowns, shoe covers, head protection. Also, there are masks, respirators, eye protection, face shields, and goggles. Each employee will need to wear the appropriate type of PPE required for his or her job.

For example, gloves help protect employees when directly handling dangerous materials. Gowns help protect clothing from contamination. Shoe and head covers provide a barrier against possible exposure within a contaminated area. Masks help protect the nose and mouth. Respirators filter the air before someone inhales things that they shouldn’t. Goggles help protect only the eyes. A face shield provides splatter protection to facial skin, eyes, nose, and mouth.

Job Specific PPE

The PPE required for each job will vary based on the workplace and potential exposure to hazards. For example, a healthcare worker may need masks, eyewear, gloves, and gowns. On the other hand, a construction worker may need head protection, eye protection, and gloves. Depending on what task they are working on, this could vary. They may also need a face shield, fall protection or even special types of clothing.

Every situation will be different. It will be up to the employer to determine which types of Personal Protective Equipment will be required for each type of job. As an employee, PPE is so important to protect oneself. This will help reduce the chance for a workplace injury.