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PPE Legislation Has Changed: How to Prepare Your Workforce

In 2016, the Person Protective Equipment Directive was updated and came into effect in 2018. These changes to the PPE legislation define what PPE is and what it covers.

Not only has it been updated, the PPE categories have changed along with the PPE Directive. There is now a maximum five year certificate validity according to the BSI PPE Whitepaper.

How you should have prepared your workers for these changes?

The PPE Legislation You Need to Know

Before the April 2018 deadline, all businesses needed to know the changes in order to update their H&S policies.

You should have re-assessed any workplace hazards since the change in PPE regulations to prevent accidents in the workplace. If not, your company could be prosecuted for non-compliance.

'know the rules' is being written on a piece of paper

Do You Know the 7 PPE Categories?

The new categories are:

  1. Hearing Protection
  2. Head Protection
  3. Eye & Face Protection
  4. Foot Protection
  5. Hand & Arm Protection
  6. Body Protection (including Knee & Leg)
  7. Respiratory Protection

You should have assessed what your workers need for their maximum safety within each of the 7 categories. They may not need equipment from these categories but it is likely their job falls under at least one.

Workplace Safety Statistics - What You Need to Take Note Of

The UK is the safest place to work in Europe because of the Health and Safety Executive and the modern evolution in PPE technology.

According to the HSE:

  • 99% of noise-induced hearing loss is preventable with the correct hearing protection
  • 84% of workers who sustained a head injury were not wearing head protection
  • Wearing gloves reduces hand injuries by 60%.

Minor incidents that happen in the workplace cost time, productivity and money. It is important you avoid these incidents.

As a business owner, you have a legal obligation to keep the workplace and your employees safe. You can do this by complying with the PPE Regulations.

man is pointing at paper with statistics

Enforcement Starts with You

98% of employees claim they have seen their colleagues not wearing the correct PPE in the workplace. 

The reasons are:

  • Poor fit
  • Lack of accessibility
  • Discomfort
  • Unfashionable

You are required to enforce the correct usage of personal protective equipment in at work. Motivate your workforce to consider their long term health and their work friends.

A safety brief on workplace accidents will help your employees realise how important their personal health is.

Improvements to PPE are being made all of the time to make it comfortable and safer for the wearer. If you receive complaints, you many need to update your worker’s safety kits to get them to comply.

What is the Cost?

You need to provide and replace PPE free of charge. You are also required to provide insurance against worker injury, illness or death because it is likely you will need to pay compensation.

Specialist PPE equipment can be expensive but it is saves money, time lost and losing your business should there be an incident.

You can save money buy buying the correct protective equipment and in bulk. The price of safety is low compared to the potentials costs to your business.

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