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What PPE must I use? Find out here with these three common workplace hazards

by , 05 May 2016
You have a legal duty to uphold your employees' health and safety in the workplace. And part of that duty is to provide them with personal protective equipment (PPE).

And you must also ensure the PPE you provide actually suits the hazard it's being used for.

So to help give you get an idea of what PPE to provide, here's a list of three very common workplace hazards in a standard workplace...


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Hazard#1: Handling materials and processing them

Depending on the materials used, dust of various types is emitted when those materials are handled and processed.

This includes dust particles such as asbestos, wood and silica.

Even chemical liquids, sparks and fumes can be released as by-product or a waste product when handling and processing these materials.

What PPE should you issue?

Appropriate PPE here would include fume and dust masks or even a combination of the two.

You may also want to include skin protection for hands as well as eye protection against splashes or any foreign bodies, such as dust, entering the eyes.

Hazard#2: General work

General work carries with it very common risks in the workplace. For example, items can easily fall on a worker's head because of other workers, for example, moving bricks above him.

That's why standard PPE should be provided.

Standard PPE here would include:
·         hard hats, otherwise known as safety hats;
·         steel-toed boots; and
·         overalls.
Hazard#3: Loud noises

Loud noises are a common hazard in many workplace settings, especially those which operate machinery.

Anything above 85dB (decibels) requires PPE.

Here, the most appropriate PPE would be hearing protection in the form of ear muffs and ear plugs.
TIP: With all issued PPE, you must ensure that it fits your employees correctly. Also ensure your employees are properly trained on how to use it, as well as on how to clean it before and after use.
*Those were three common workplace hazards, along with what PPE you should provide for them.

If your workplace contains one or more of them, ensure that you provide your employees with the correct PPE and avoid penalties from coming your way.

To learn more, page over to Chapter P 01: Personal Protective Equipment in your Health and Safety Advisor handbook.

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