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Personal Protective Equipment - PPE

What is PPE?

PPE is equipment that will protect the user against health or safety risks at work. It can include items such as safety helmets and hard hats, gloves, eye protection, high-visibility clothing, safety footwear and safety harnesses etc.

Hearing protection and respiratory protective equipment, although not technically regarded as PPE are included in this section as the same general pinciples do apply

  • Suitable for hazard
  • Suitable for the wearer
  • Must be compatible with any other PPE provided.
When is it Provided?

PPE must be provided and used where there is a risk to health and safety which cannot be adequately controlled by other means. Removing the hazard or using engineering controls at source protects everyone.

It is Personal to the wearer and only protects the wearer.

In practice PPE can be used in conjunction with other control measures.

PPE should only be used when all other control measures have been considered, when identified in a risk assessment and when directed by a safety sign.

What is Required?
  • assess the needs of staff and ensure that any PPE issued is suitable for the wearer and fit for purpose;
  • ensure that all PPE used is compatible (with the task(s) and other pieces of PPE);
  • maintain and replace PPE as required;
  • store PPE in a safe and secure place;
  • train staff in the correct use of PPE; and
  • ensure that staff continue to use the PPE correctly
  • ensure that any problems or defects are reported by staff and noted

PPE only protects the wearer. Removing the hazard or using controls at source protects everyone.

'hearing protection and RPE, although not technically regraded as PPE are included in the section as the same general principles do apply. They have to be suitable for the hazard, the wearer and must be compatible with other items of PPE where they are required to be worn.'