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The Importance of PPE for Construction Workers

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Working in construction can often be one of the riskiest jobs; this means you need to be extra careful while you’re on the job, and that’s where PPE comes in. While you may want to look your best for work, your safety should always come before a sense of style.

Why Should You Wear Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)?

PPE helps minimize the chance of injury from workplace hazards. Examples of PPE include:

  • hard hats
  • safety glasses
  •  face shields
  •  earplugs and muffs
  • respirators
  • gloves
  • boots

Protective equipment is necessary to protect health and well-being, especially in workplaces that involve significant safety risks. It is important to note that PPE is your last line of defense and should only be relied on after engineering and administrative controls fail. Wearing PPE does not mean you fall short of carrying other standard safety protocols.

Remember to inspect your PPE before wearing it and look for any damage and deterioration that may have resulted over time. Always replace any worn-out or damaged PPE immediately. Even the best quality PPE won’t protect you if it’s not functioning properly. Please remember there is never a good excuse for not wearing PPE, and failure to comply with PPE requirements puts you at severe risk of injury.

What Should You Look for in a Personal Protection Equipment?

Whether you are opting for PPE to protect yourself from contracting COVID-19 or work in any construction company and want to protect yourself from injuries – don’t forget:

  • PPE – Personal Protection Equipment should minimize the risks of injuries that may take place in your working environment.
  • During your contact with chemicals, tools, machinery, or other workplace hazards, your PPE should keep you safe and secure throughout.
  • Your protection gear should adhere to common safety standards, as well as the specifications laid out by your place of employment.
  • The PPE you choose should provide you with the utmost comfort. You may need to wear PPE for several hours at a time; that’s why your PPE should be comfortable and easy to wear.
  • They should be durable, cost-effective, and in regular supply. Depending on your work’s nature, you may find yourself needing to replace your PPE often, and you wouldn’t want to break the bank every time.

To Highlight the Importance of Using PPE, Let’s Take A Look at Some Statistics:

  • Construction ranks in the Top 5 occupations with the highest rate of injury.
  • In 2019, the construction industry reported approximately 195,600 work-related injuries.
  • The construction industry saw approximately 250 accidents per 10,000 Full-Time Equivalent in 2019.
  • In 2019, contact with objects and equipment led to 792 fatalities.

Source: https://workinjurysource.com/workplace-injury-statistics-2019/

Although data from 2020 has not been made available yet, these numbers only went up between 2018 and 2019, highlighting the need for greater awareness and consideration of PPE and personal safety while working.

Here are a few examples of PPE that you can use to guarantee your safety while on the job

Hardhats

Hardhats may be the most important kind of PPE for anyone working in construction. They don’t just protect your head from falling objects and blunt force; they also help by providing insulation against the danger of electric shock.

Gloves

For most construction workers, your hands are your greatest assets, which is why you need to protect them at all costs. Gloves can protect your extremities from cuts, burns, injuries to your bones, and even chemical-related accidents. Rubber gloves are the front line against injuries caused by electrical accidents.

Safety Goggles

Eyesight is the most vital of the senses for any construction worker. That’s why you need to keep your eyes protected at all times while on the job. Protective eyewear can guard your vision from flying objects, chemicals, and heat. Those working in jobs that involve concreting, welding, and cutting should be especially careful when protecting their eyes.

Earplugs

Most construction sites utilize heavy machinery that produces loud noises. Even if you don’t personally operate such equipment, simply being around them can be destructive to your sense of hearing. Earplugs can go a long way in protecting your sense of hearing from getting damaged over time due to long-term exposure to such machines.

What Else Can You Do?

Working in such a physically intensive field as construction creates bonds between fellow workers. Whether you’re an architect, engineer, electrician, or anything else, chances are you work in an environment full of people that know you and care about you. None of you want to see each other get hurt. That’s why you can lead by example and inspire others to take proper PPE protocols seriously by doing the same. By using PPE, you’re not just ensuring your physical safety but that of your fellow workers as well. Each of you plays a role in working towards a safer, happier workplace environment. Following and encouraging the use of PPE is the first step in building that environment together.

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