1. Introduction

Personal Protection implies the provisions and use of various types of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), such as safety boots, ear protectors, aprons, gloves. As such it may be considered as either last resort, when all other methods of protection have failed or purely as an interim form of protection until the hazard can be eliminated at source or controlled by some form of 'safe place' strategy, such as machinery guarding or the installation and use of local exhaust ventilation system. Personal Protective Equipment includes a wide range of equipment worn and used by people at work to protect them from both general and specific hazards. As such, it includes:

  • Head Protection: Safety Helmets, Bump caps, Caps and Hair nets.
  • Eye Protection: Goggles, Safety Spectacles, hand held or freestanding screens.
  • Face Protection: Face shields, which can be hand held, fixed to helmet or strapped to head.
  • Respiratory Protection: General-Purpose Dust Respirators, Positive Pressure Powered Respirators, Helmet Contained Positive Pressure Respirators, Gas Respirators, Emergency Escape Respirators, Airline Breathing Apparatus, Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus
  • Hearing Protection: Ear Plugs, Ear Defenders, Muffs and Pads, Ear Valves, Acoustic Wool.
  • Skin Protection: Barrier Creams
  • Body Protection: One Piece and Two Piece Overalls, Donkey Jackets, Aprons, Warehouse Coats, Body Warmer, Oilskin Over Clothing, Chemical Clothing.
  • Hand and Arm Protection: General Purpose Fibre Gloves, PVC Fabric Gauntlets, Gloves, Sleeves, Chain Mail Hand and Arm Protectors.
  • Leg and Foot Protection: Safety Boots, Shoes, Wellingtons, Gaiters and Anklets.

As an employer, you must assess your workplace to determine if hazards are present that require the use of personal protective equipment. If such hazards are present, you must select protective equipment and required workers to use it, communicate your protective equipment selection decisions to your workers, and select personal protective equipment that properly fits your workers. You must also train workers who are required to wear personal protective equipment on how to do the following:

  • Use protective equipment properly,
  • Be aware of when personal protective equipment is necessary, Know what kind of protective equipment is necessary,
  • Understand the limitations of personal protective equipment in protecting workers from injury,
  • Put on, adjust, wear, and take off personal protective equipment, and maintain protective equipment properly.


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