Individuals are not good and often make mistakes. We take shortcuts, forget learn how to do things, or grow to be distracted at times once we shouldn’t. In most aspects of our lives, these will not be things which have dire consequences. At work, nevertheless, surrounded by hazards, these types of mistakes can alter lives, even finish them. So, though human beings usually are not perfect, we need to make our safety programs as near good as we can.
PPE Focus: Face Shields
Personal protective equipment (PPE) is a side of safety the place people are likely to make many mistakes, and for quite a lot of reasons. Typically, we think that the mere wearing of PPE makes us proof against injury. With as a lot emphasis as we place on eye protection and head protection, can we lose sight (no pun intended) of protecting our faces? Certainly, eye protection is necessary, since eye injuries can lead to everlasting blindness. Equally essential is head protection, stopping deadly head accidents the most effective that we can. Face injuries could not seem as significant a priority. They don’t have the immediate, permanent, and doubtlessly deadly consequences of the others. With that said, though, an employer’s accountability is to protect all elements of their employees, including their faces.
That accountability includes identifying tasks the place face shields needs to be used, providing face shields for workers to use, training them to make use of face shields appropriately, and to appropriate workers when face shields are used incorrectly or not used at all. The primary elements are easy. Our employees will make mistakes. Correcting those errors and imposing your company’s face shield necessities is an essential part of an effective PPE program. Sadly, too often, this facet of the PPE program is just not enforced till after an worker is injured.
Conditions to Use Face Shields
Consider the next situations the place face shields ought to have been used, and the results for the injured workers and their employers.
An employee was filling ammonia nurse tanks from a bulk plant. The employee was distracted while closing the valves, and mistakenly turned the fallacious valve, inflicting a pressure release within the line. The discharge of anhydrous ammonia splashed on the employee’s face. The worker was hospitalized for chemical burns on and around the face.
An worker was installing a water pipe at a multifamily residential building project. The employee initially was working an excavator, then climbed down from the excavator to chop a 10-inch water pipe with a cut-off saw. The saw kicked back and struck the worker’s face. Co-workers called emergency providers, who transported the worker to the hospital. The worker was admitted to the hospital and handled for facial lacerations that prolonged from underneath the left eye to underneath the jaw.
In the first situation, the worker suffered serious chemical burns. A face shield would have significantly reduced the chemical exposure, the extent of the chemical burns, and possibly could have prevented any ammonia from splashing on the employee’s face. Sure, the worker turned the wrong valve, however does that imply that the employer is absolved of all accountability for this incident? Of course not. The fact stays that the employer ought to provide employees filling ammonia nurse tanks with face shields, train staff to make use of the face shields appropriately, and require them to make use of them when performing this task. Then they need to continually and consistently enforce the face shield requirements. Doing so would have provided additional protection to the employee, even from the effects of the worker’s own actions.