If you work in a warehouse or manufacturing setting, you’ve almost certainly been required to wear protective equipment on the job, such as hard hats, goggles, work boots and gloves. However, there tends to be a lot of confusion around personal protective equipment (often referred to as “PPE”) and how and when it is supposed to be used. As an employee, it’s your responsibility to understand how protective equipment is correctly used and adhere to proper safety protocols on the job.
Below, we debunk some of the most common myths surrounding personal protective equipment (PPE).
1. The more PPE worn, the better.
Despite what many people think, overprotection and underprotection can be equally dangerous. Overprotection from too many layers can lead to heat stress or become overly cumbersome, while underprotection can result in harmful exposure or skin contact with hazardous substances on the job. It’s important to check with your employer in determining the correct level of protection against workplace hazards at your company.
2. Small jobs don’t require PPE.
PPE should always be worn in the workplace, regardless of how big or small a job may be. It’s a dangerous misconception that small jobs don’t require PPE. Even if a job will take only a few minutes, all it takes is an instant for a slip or spill to occur and cause a potentially serious accident.
Regardless of how minor a job may seem, it’s critical to wear your equipment for any task completed in the workplace.
3. Cleaning and storing PPE doesn’t matter.
After each use, all PPE should be properly cleaned and safely stored to ensure its long-term effectiveness. It’s important to avoid leaving PPE exposed for any great lengths of time, as it will potentially become damaged and leave you at risk for injury or health hazards. If any PPE is wrongfully mishandled, your manager should be notified and the equipment should be replaced immediately.
Be Prepared to Work Safely
When it comes to safety in the workplace, you’re much better off being safe than sorry. If you believed even just one of the myths above, it’s time to reeducate yourself about personal protective equipment. If you are ready to get to work and looking for a new warehouse job, contact On Time Staffing to see if a position is available in your area.