Make sure you know how to protect yourself so you can enjoy what you do at work or at home — with the correct PPE safety gear
What PPE really means
Personal protection equipment (PPE) means the clothes and work gear you use to protect yourself from safety and health risks at work, or at home.
Many places contain risks you can’t escape. Working on a construction site, using power tools, working in a factory, or even working in your own garden are just a few examples where there are hidden safety risks.
But with the right safety gear, you can get any job done without fear.
About OSHA and ANSI standards
OSHA’s list of essential PPE equipment for construction sites includes protection for your eyes and face, feet, hands, head, and hearing.
While OSHA is run by the government, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) is a private body that brings together private and public sector experts, who work together to develop personal safety equipment standards to ensure safety across the country.
And by checking in with these bodies when starting work at a new site, you’ll make sure your workplace meets all safety rules and you’ll be protected well as long as you work there.
Best personal protection equipment
Assess the risks around you
Before starting work in any place, public or private, it’s crucial you check the potential dangers and take the right safety measures.
If there is a risk objects can fall, hard hats or bump caps will keep your head safe and cushioned from hard blows.
Earplugs or ear-defenders will protect your ears from loud machinery, from circle saws to jackhammers and beyond.
When it comes to chemical or metal splashes, safety spectacles, goggles and face-shields protect your face and eyes.
And if you’ll be in an area where there’s dust or chemical vapors, disposable valved or unvalved dust masks — or face masks with filters — ensure you won’t breathe it in.
For jobs that require kneeling on hard surfaces, gel and foam knee pads and knee pad trousers protect your knees from injury.
And if there will be sharp and broken objects on the floor, shoes or boots with slip-resistant and puncture-resistant soles are a no-brainer.