Essential Safety Equipment Used in the Construction Industry

construction worker

Personal protective equipment, popularly referred to as PPE, is your option when it comes to worker protection at a construction site. They work by preventing accidents, minimizing impact, thus fewer injuries. Employers are obligated to provide all forms of protective equipment and ensure that all safety rules are followed. Besides buying high-quality construction helmets for construction workers, there are other types of protective clothing for construction workers.

Safety Shoes

Fatal injuries that occur in construction sites are caused by falling, slipping, or tripping. The accidents occur on unsafe scaffolds and ladders. For this reason, every worker in a construction site must wear gripping or anti-skid boots. Some boots are made with special steel or composite toes to prevent injury caused by falling objects such as hammers, nails, or a bump against a hard surface. For workers in extremely hot or cold temperatures, composite toe shoes are highly recommended since they are light and are poor conductors of heat.

Ear Plugs

A construction site is likely to have tools such as jackhammers, chain saws, moving trucks, among other machinery that results in a lot of noise. Unfortunately, prolonged exposure to noise can impair a worker’s hearing ability. To minimize the noise effect to the ears, every worker must use formable or pre-molded ear muffs. You can also use acoustic foam-lined ear muffs to protect yourself from the noise.

Safety Gloves

Construction requires active use of the body, especially the hands. It is therefore important to ensure that the hands are safe from cuts and burns. There are various types of hand gloves available today, depending on different applications. For instance, chemical resistant gloves are suitable for someone working with chemical reagents, insulated gloves suitable for electric dangers, rubber gloves suitable for anyone working with concrete.

Most people in the construction industry go for canvas and heavy-duty gloves as well as welding gloves in case of any welding requirements. Gloves should have a snug fit and be free of any burns, chemical residues, or tears and rips that might compromise their quality.

Safety Goggles

The eyes are among the most important yet sensitive parts of the body, thus requiring utmost care and protection. Most eye injuries are caused by exposure to dangerous elements such as light radiation, molten metals, gases, vapors, particles, and acids. While at a construction site, most workers will be required to cut, weld, grind, nail, and handle concrete.

They, therefore, must use goggles to protect their eyes. Safety equipment required for eye protection varies depending on the task at hand. As such, in addition to safety goggles, a worker may need a face shield, face mask, dust goggles, chemical splash goggles, and welding shields.

Hard Hats

hard hats

This is the most popular construction safety gear, also referred to as a safety helmet. Head injuries are common in any construction site as there is always a risk of falling objects. These hats protect workers from fatal head striking injuries. They also offer protection against electric shock, direct sunlight, and rain. Most hard hats are manufactured from Ultem, or polyethylene making them safe and comfortable for head protection.

High visibility Clothing

This PPE is of utmost significance if you are working on a construction site such as a road or a bridge, where there is a likelihood of being hit by a motorist. These clothes are brightly colored with reflective accents to maximize visibility. Depending on the site type and work at hand, workers may use jumpsuits, vests, trousers, jackets, or full-body suits as their visibility clothing.

Regardless of what you choose to use, these clothes should fit snugly to ensure there are no falling risks and the user is comfortable all the time. They should also be cleaned and replaced regularly to ensure that the wearer remains visible at all times.

Fall Protection Equipment

This comes in handy for all tasks performed from heights. They include lanyards and harnesses. They should be thoroughly inspected before use to ensure that straps and buckles are in good condition. Also, ensure a sturdy connection to the anchor. In case this equipment causes a fall, dispose of it immediately to avoid further damage.

Administrative and structural controls might not be effective and practical all the time. This is where PPEs come in as they protect workers from exposure to dangers and reduce possible injuries to a minimum level. While there are plenty of protective gear or equipment pieces out there, the above is essential for any construction worker.

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