Across almost every industry, there are a variety of different workplace hazards that may require the use of head and face protection. While it’s always best to first engineer out the hazards, knowing the regulations for your job site and regularly monitoring for new potential hazards is critical to the safety of you and your crew.
Struck-by falling object incidents occur in the construction industry, often from falling small tools and materials. Hard hats that are comfortable enough to wear throughout the day are one option to help address this.
Working at-height or near energized equipment are common hazards for the wind energy, electric power distribution and telecommunications industries. Climbing helmets and full brim hard hats are common head protection PPE options.
From confined spaces and struck-by incidents, to welding splash hazards and more, this industry can require a variety of different types head and face protection solutions based on the application.
Low-hanging overhead objects and falling objects are typical hazards for the mining industry. Depending on the presence of water on the jobsite, vented or non-vented hard hats are a common head protection PPE option.
According to OSHA, protective safety helmets should resist penetration, absorb the shock of a blow and protect against electrical shock. Some of the most common workplace hazards that head protection can help address are:
Head trauma from falling objects like small tools or materials can cause long-term injury or even death, so it’s important to always wear head protection while working below other workers who are using small tools or materials that could fall. Depending on the weight of the falling object, the hard hat may help prevent significant injury. Likewise, head trauma can also occur from striking low overhead objects, so it’s important to wear head protection around these as well.
Flying objects pose a risk to more than just the top of your head. In many cases, eye protection may not be enough as debris, molten metal, liquid chemicals, acids or even biological hazards in medical fields can all affect the safety of your face and health. Painters, metal workers, health care professionals and others who work around these types of hazards should consider a faceshield that covers the entire face in addition to their other PPE.
Radiant heat loads are most commonly found in metalworking, glass manufacturing and similar industries, and these can be hazardous to both to the wearer and to the head protection PPE itself if it is not rated for the application. In these cases, an elevated temperature hard hat may be necessary to maintain the integrity of the head protection.