Hazards are present in every workplace. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reveals the majority of workplace injuries occur while workers are performing their normal job duties at their regular work sites.
In many industries, avoiding injuries and incidents depends on correctly identifying and acquiring the proper personal protective equipment, or “PPE” for the task.
Body protection generally protects the torso, but can also include full-body coverage that can protect from chemical splashes, sharp objects, or welding sparks. The proper type and condition of equipment will need to be determined by a job hazard assessment conducted before the work begins.
Note: Body protection and other PPE will not completely eliminate hazards.
The most common types of body protection include the following:
- Laboratory coats
- Front or rear gowns
- Full body suits
- Paper or fiber
- Treated wool or cotton
- Assure employees have been fully trained on its proper use
- Inspect body protection for holes, cuts, or other noticeable signs of wear
- Replace any worn or damaged articles
- Assure body protection fits properly. Ill-fitting clothing may result in additional hazards such as trips and caught-in hazards.
- Perform on-site cleaning and maintenance of equipment. Do not clean body protection items at home or in public laundromats.
- If working with chemicals, biohazards, or other hazardous materials, remove and properly dispose of any contaminated clothing immediately.
KPA offers a Personal Protective Equipment training course for management that includes information on hearing, respiratory and full-body protection, PPE selection, inspection, and maintenance. A series of toolbox safety documents are also available about specific types of PPE such as eye, foot and hand protection, and types of machinery and clothing.