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Essential PPE in factories

Personal protective equipment (PPE) is detrimental when it comes to protecting staff who work in high-risk roles in factories. According to figures from HSE, in 2019/20 1.6 million people suffered from a work-related illness while 65,427 injuries to employees was reported under RIDDOR.

Employers are required to assess the workplace and conduct risk assessments to determine hazards. To ensure the workplace is safe, procedures and training should be in place to encourage workplace safety. Correct PPE to complete their job in the factory is also recommended and employees must be trained to know when PPE is necessary and how best to avoid injury. Below we’ve highlighted a few PPE items that may be required depending on the role of the employee.

Head protection

Hard hats and helmets are designed to protect the users head from falling or swinging objects. They also protect other parts of the body including the neck, hair, ears, and nose. Head protection is required in roles where heavy materials could fall and cause head injury so it’s important to wear a helmet that fits your head comfortably.

Feet protection

There are a range of footwear PPE available depending on the type of work you do. Steel toe caps are particularly useful for manual handling to prevent heavy or sharp items harming your toes and are slip and trip resistant, while anti-static and conductive footwear protect against static electricity. Your safety boots should be worn at all times in the factory.

Eyes and face protection

Eyewear is worn to reduce the risk of foreign objects entering the eyes and damaging them. This includes dust particles, flying objects, and dangerous vapours. Face shields and visors can be worn to protect the whole face. It’s important to wear safety goggles and face shields that comfortably fit the users face to ensure nothing can enter through the gaps.

Hand protection

Did you know 25% of workplace accidents involve the hands and fingers? If you’re operating machinery regularly, handling chemicals, or work with wood or metal, it’s important to wear gloves or sleeves and arm protection. These can prevent blisters, splinters, and burns.

Ear protection

There are a variety of ear protection available, including earmuffs which are lined with sound absorbing material, ear plugs which fit snugly into the ear canal and form a seal, and canal caps which cover the entrance of the ear. Hearing protection must be worn by those who are exposed to noise at or above the exposure level as this can cause damage to your hearing.

Correctly observing health and safety in the workplace is important to protect all staff members. Make sure to replace all items when they become defective to continue protecting yourself in the workplace. 


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