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The Rising Popularity of Safety Helmets?on the Jobsite

Hard hats have?come a long way since shipbuilders would cover their hats with tar to create a layer of protection from tools and objects falling from ships.?Today, the hard hat has become an iconic symbol to represent the construction industry.?Hard hats?are?typically?made?of polyethylene?and?additional?accessories such as shields, visors, hearing?protection and lights can be attached.?OSHA?requires?that?head protection must be worn whenever working in an area with potential injury to the head from falling objects.?Signs reading, “Hard Hat Required,” welcome each worker?to the?site, where every individual is wearing one, regardless of?their?trade or the task they are doing. And while hard?hats?have?typically?been?the longstanding?go-to?choice?for protection?against permanent, life-changing injuries or death,?more and more,?they?are being replaced by safety helmet. These helmets,?derived from the ones used in?extreme sports such as rock climbing or even?whitewater?rafting,?attach?more closely?on the?head?and?have?built-in chin straps.?This?‘helmet revolution’?has?some?safety managers?looking beyond the typical hard hat when?choosing?the best protective headgear to fit?their?crews’?needs while keeping them safe?on the job.

The Importance of Head Protection

Advancements in PPE can be invaluable for workers,?their?employers and?insurance companies.?With no shortage of ways to get injured on a jobsite, head protection is essential to defend against falling objects?such as?tools and debris,?fixed objects such as pipes or?electrical hazards,?and trips, slips?or falls. Yet, despite it being?a well-known fact that head protection is crucial to workplace safety,?head injuries continue to be one of the most?frequent?injuries on the job. The most common head injuries include concussions, head contusions, brain hemorrhage, hematoma and skull fractures. Remote Medical International (RMI) states most head injuries within the construction and manufacturing industry are caused by slips and falls. According to OSHA, in 2016, 38 percent of all fatalities in the workplace were caused by falls, making it the leading cause of fatalities in the workplace.

Will a Face Shield Protect You From the Coronavirus?

Face shields have been used in healthcare settings for a while now, but they’ve become a staple for medical personnel who have to intubate patients with COVID-19. Face shields are often worn during a wide variety of medical procedures. This includes surgeries or any procedure where bone fragments, blood or other bodily fluids could get into the eyes, nose and mouth.

A face shield is simply a curved plastic or Plexiglas panel attached to a headband that can be worn over the face. It should fit securely so there isn’t a gap between the band and the forehead. The shield should also extend beyond the chin.

“Because they extend down from the forehead, shields protect the eyes as well as the nose and mouth,” says pediatric infectious disease specialist Frank Esper, MD. The coverage that face shields offer is ideal since the new coronavirus can enter the body through those points. We provide many protective products.

Are face shields effective?

A 2014 study showed that when tested against an influenza-infused aerosol from a distance of 18 inches away, a face shield reduced exposure by 96% during the period immediately after a cough. The face shield also reduced the surface contamination of a respirator by 97%.“It protects you, the wearer,” Dr. Esper says. “But if you cough, because the face shield is away from your face, those droplets can still get out better than if you have a mask on.”

Are face shields good for everyday use?

CDC does not recommend wearing face shields for normal everyday activities or as a substitute for cloth face coverings. However, some people may choose to use a face shield when they know that they’ll be in sustained close contact with others. In these cases, it’s best to wear a mask underneath the face shield and maintain physical distancing when possible. This will help minimize the risk of infection since face shields have openings at the bottom.

Safety Glasses and Protective Eyewear

Eye protection means more than just wearing the contact lenses or glasses you may use for vision correction. The type of eye protection needed will depend on what you are doing, from attending public protests to playing paintball. Your regular eyeglasses do not protect your eyes from impact, debris or damage. In fact, some eye glasses can shatter if damaged, causing even more eye injury. Protective eye wear should be made from polycarbonate material because it resists shattering and can provide UV (ultraviolet light) protection.

For most repair projects and activities around the home, it's enough to wear safety glasses that meet the criteria set by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). For many work situations, that same protection is enough, but there are important exceptions. Sports eye protection should meet the specific requirements of that sport. The sport's governing body may set and certify these requirements. The American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) may as well. In some cases, both organizations may be involved.

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