Personal Protective Equipment
The personal protective equipment (PPE) rules for construction begin in the Code of Federal Regulations at 29 CFR 1926.28. Two important requirements can be found there.
They are: You, the employer, are responsible for requiring the wearing of appropriate personal protective equipment in all operations where an employee is exposed to hazardous conditions.
You are responsible for ensuring personal protective equipment is provided and worn when an OSHA rule indicates the need for it to reduce hazards to your employees.
Wearing the proper clothing and personal protective equipment in the working environment is critical. Appropriate clothing is your first and often only line of defense against many safety and health hazards.
Protect Your Feet:
Standard footwear for most industries should be sturdy leather footwear. Preferably, boots equipped with safety toes. Tennis shoes, offer little or no protection against worksite hazards.
Gloves are inexpensive and easily available protection which guard against many hazards. They can protect hands from exposures ranging from chemical spills and cuts, to heat and cold. Hand protection comes in a huge assortment of styles, materials and sizes. All of them are made to protect your hands from specific hazards. It is important to select the proper kind and style of glove to effectively protect hands from the hazards that might be encountered. Don’t take the unnecessary risk!
Head Protection and Eye Protection:
Hard hats and safety glasses should be worn in every production area or whenever an overhead hazard or potential for an object to enter the eyes is present.
Clothing for Construction
There’s one industry where today’s fashions just don’t make it. That‘s construction. Fancy duds are likely to get caught or snagged and cause you to fall or to get hurt in some other way. Your clothing should not only be appropriate, but rugged enough to stand up to the use it’ll get.
KEEP YOUR SHIRT ON
Always wear a heavy duty shirt, preferably long sleeved with the cuffs buttoned at the wrist. Don’t wear it loose or baggy. Keep it tucked in to avoid snagging. Your shirt will protect you from sunburn, so keep it on even when the weather is hot. It also will protect you from scrapes and from skin- irritating materials, such as concrete water and poison ivy. Don’t wear anything around your neck that can dangle and get caught in machinery.
NO BAGGY PANTS
Wear straight-line pants of proper length without pocket flaps or cuffs. They should not be baggy or so long that your heels get caught in them. You probably can’t keep your pants up without a belt. If your belt is too long, cut off the extra length or run it through additional belt loops. In this way it won’t get caught and pull you into machinery.
LEAVE JEWELRY HOME
One of the most common causes of amputated fingers is jewelry, such as rings, wrist watches and bracelets. Lt may look nice, but if it gets caught in machinery, you’re in for a painful experience.
PUT YOUR BEST FOOT FORWARD
Different jobs call for different kinds of foot-wear, but, generally, properly fitted, high top safety boots should be worn. They give you more support than other boots and more protection in case you drop something on your foot where steel-tip footwear should always be required. Wear rubber boots when working in wet material, especially if it’s deep. Spreading concrete is a good example.
During cold weather, two light, woolen shirts are better than one heavy one for warmth. Gloves and hard hat liners are also advisable in cold weather.
When you dress for construction jobs, remember that you’re not out to model the latest fashions. Your work clothes may not make you the sharpest dude on the block, but you’ll look a lot better than you would if loose clothing or jewelry caused you to get caught in a machine.
A world of darkness awaits this man if a nail strikes his remaining good eye. He has yet to appreciate the need for eye protection. You, yourself, may find it difficult to get accustomed to wearing eye protection, but would getting accustomed to wearing a glass eye be any easier?
A SIGHT SAVER FOR YEARS
Eye protection has been used in the construction industry since 1910. And, undoubtedly, many workers have escaped serious eye injury because of it. You may personally know some fortunate individuals who saved their sight this way.
TAKE TIME TO SELECT THE RIGHT KIND
Depending on your job, you may need goggles, an eye shield, a face mask or safety glasses. All it takes on your part is a little effort to select the appropriate type and to wear it.
FOUR BASIC TYPES OF HAZARDS
Basically, there are four types of particles that cause eye injuries on the job:
1.Unidentified Flying Objects: These microscopic objects consist of dust and particles floating around in the air, generated by wind, equipment, or cleaning operation When working in dusty conditions, wear eye protection. Even a small speck in the eye can lead to trouble.
2. Particles Resulting From Chipping, Grinding, Sawing, Brushing, Hammering or Using Power Tools: These particles move at an amazing speed and strike with the force of a bullet. Wear eye protection any time over-head operations are performed. It may be advisable on some jobs to wear safety goggles under a full face shield.
3. Invisible Hazards: You can’t see the injurious light rays generated by welding operations or laser be And their effects often are not felt until hours later. Wear the eye protection required when using such equipment. And if you happen to be working nearby, don’t look in the direction of welding arcs or where a laser beam is being used.
4. Liquids: Hot liquids, such as tar or asphalt, solvents ,paint, and solutions for cleaning masonry or metal, can cause serious eye injury if splashed in your fac The use of proper eye protection, possibly a full face shield, is essential when transferring liquids between containers and when using caustic or acid cleaners.
Eye injuries happen in a split second. So put on your eye protection as soon as you get back to your job after this meeting. Don’t blind yourself to the necessity of protecting your sight.
Foresight Preserves Eyesight
There are all kinds of eye hazards in construction work—and there’s excellent protection for every eye hazard you’ll find on a project. Just remember: there’s every kind of eye protective device readily available—but you’re using your one and only pair of eyes right now.
Here are some of the more common operations where eye protection is an absolute must:
- Chipping, sledging and hammering on metal, stone or concrete.
- Using manual, pneumatic and power impact tools.
- Caulking, brushing and grinding.
- Drilling, scaling and scraping.
- Soldering and casting hot metals.
- Handling hot tar, oils, liquids, and molten substances.
- Handling acids, caustics and creosoted materials.
- Gas welding, cutting and brazing.
- Electric arc welding and cutting; also, any operations that may expose the eyes to dust, gases, fumes or liquids.
- Drilling overhead.
- Working where there’s dust blowing around.
Eye protection can be comfortable when you get a good fit. True, goggles can fog up, but you can wear a sweat-band if you sweat a lot—and there are anti-fog liquids, too. Maybe there’s some inconvenience involved sometimes in using eye protection—but what’s that compared with the “inconvenience” of having to learn how to read Braille?
From Head To Foot
Business reviews would seem to indicate that today Americans are spending more for clothing than anytime in history. This is in accordance with American standards, and to deny the advantages of being meticulous in dress would be an insult.
And yet, we take so much pride in the social aspect of our dress – what about the really important angle? What about the manner in which we dress for work with safety in mind?
- Are we meticulous in the protection of our skull, the important guardian of our brain center, through the wearing of a hard hat?
- What about our sight, our most important sense? Do we have our eyes examined periodically…if necessary, do we use our glasses when reading.. and above all, do we cover them with safety goggles when the occasion demands?
- The shirt, an important piece of app If we operate, or are engaged around moving machinery and equipment, do we wear short sleeve shirts, or have straight cuffs? The same goes for jackets. Never wear a loose fitting jacket, keep it buttoned or zippered shut at least chest high.
- Our hands are a very vulnerable part of our body. If our work calls for it, do we wear gloves? Also remember, worn or tattered gloves are more dangerous than no gloves at all.
- Wearing overalls or pants with cuffed or rolled up legs is a poor practic If the legs are too long have them cut off and hemmed. Straight legs reduce the self-tripping hazard.
- How about shoes? They don’t have to shine with a brilliant luster, but they must be practical. A safe working shoe has a thick sole; thin sole shoes can result in serious foot punctures. To protect against toe injuries, steel capped shoes are most practical. Shoe laces should not be too long.
- Watch out for jewelry. It can catch on things, too. Don’t wear loose watch chains, straps, keys on belt, etc., or any item that might hook on something and place you in a hazardous position. Rings, wristlets and other jewelry belong at home and not on the job.