Everything You Need to Know About Safety Equipment
Various occupational health and safety practices usually use hazard controls and interventions to control any hazard in the work place that threatens the life of employees. According to Occupational Safety and Health Act 1984, under section 19, every employer has an obligation of ensuring that all workers have safety equipment in places where they cannot avoid hazards and they should not pay any fee in getting this equipment.
Safety equipment is considered as the last method in the protection of workers from work-related injuries. That’s why it should be used only when other safety practices are not implementable immediately and they become very effective when they are used as a supplement of other hazard control means so as to minimize the risks of injury. Some businesses can supply safety workwear and work safety gear that is available in Brisbane.
Some of the issues that affect the use of safety equipment include discomfort of the wearers, inconvenience in a particular task, and being inappropriately or poorly maintained. As an employer, you should ensure that problems as a result of improper selection, fit and even their maintenance should not undermine the efficiency of the equipment. What are these types of safety equipment? Let’s explore more.
Types of Safety Equipment
Based on the type of protection the equipment gives; there are various categories of safety equipment which include:
- Eye protection – these include goggles, shields, and visors specifically for your eye protection.
- Hand protection – gloves and barrier creams are the most common.
- Respiratory protection – they include disposable, airline, cartridge and half or full face
- Hearing protection – this category includes ear muffs and plugs
- Head protection – these include helmets, caps, hard hats and hoods
- Foot protection – wear strong shoes and boots
- Skin protection – the safety equipment in this category include sunburn cream, hats, and even long sleeved clothes
- Working from heights – you need to have harness and fall arrest devices
- Other safety equipment includes disposable clothing that you use when working with chemicals, welding, and painting and radiation hazards. They include sleeve protectors, aprons for x-ray protection, aprons, coveralls when using chemicals like leather jackets, trousers and also spat for welding. Also, they include thermal protective clothing when working near furnaces.
Responsibilities of Management for Safety Equipment
What are the responsibilities of management for safety equipment and therefore it should ensure that:
- Professional advice should be given so as to determine the most appropriate type of safety equipment for the work to be done
- Needs for safety equipment are assessed by a professional
- Training is given to employees and supervisors to ensure proper selection, cleaning, fitting size, cleaning and maintenance of safety equipment.
- Every policy about safety equipment should be supervised and enforced
- Evaluation of safety equipment program is done regularly
- Any visitor who visits your premises and is exposed to hazards should be provided with the appropriate safety equipment
- The safety equipment shall be cleaned thoroughly before they are reused.
- All the safety equipment should always comply with the set laws and the existing safety equipment should be assessed often
Management having played their roles, employees should also follow the same path. According to Occupational Safety and Health Regulations 1996 all employees:
- Should use safety equipment in a manner in which they have been instructed to use it
- Should not damage or misuse any safety equipment
- Must always report or notify the supervisor of any damage, malfunctions, need to clean the safety clothing or equipment