Individuals are not excellent and infrequently make mistakes. We take shortcuts, neglect methods to do things, or develop into distracted at occasions when we shouldn’t. In most elements of our lives, these usually are not things which have dire consequences. At work, however, surrounded by hazards, these types of mistakes can alter lives, even finish them. So, regardless that human beings are usually not good, we have to make our safety programs as close to good as we can.
PPE Focus: Face Shields
Personal protective equipment (PPE) is a side of safety where folks are likely to make many errors, and for a wide range of reasons. Often, we think that the mere wearing of PPE makes us immune to injury. With as a lot emphasis as we place on eye protection and head protection, will we lose sight (no pun intended) of protecting our faces? Actually, eye protection is necessary, since eye injuries can lead to everlasting blindness. Equally necessary is head protection, stopping fatal head injuries the best that we can. Face accidents could not appear as significant a priority. They do not have the fast, everlasting, and potentially deadly penalties of the others. With that said, though, an employer’s duty is to protect all components of their staff, together with their faces.
That duty includes figuring out tasks the place face shields should be used, providing face shields for workers to make use of, training them to use face shields correctly, and to correct staff when face shields are used incorrectly or not used at all. The first elements are easy. Our employees will make mistakes. Correcting these mistakes and enforcing your organization’s face shield necessities is an essential a part of an effective PPE program. Sadly, too often, this aspect of the PPE program shouldn’t be enforced till after an worker is injured.
Conditions to Use Face Shields
Consider the next conditions where face shields ought to have been used, and the consequences for the injured workers and their employers.
An worker was filling ammonia nurse tanks from a bulk plant. The employee was distracted while closing the valves, and mistakenly turned the mistaken valve, inflicting a pressure launch in the line. The release of anhydrous ammonia splashed on the employee’s face. The worker was hospitalized for chemical burns on and across the face.
An employee was putting in a water pipe at a multifamily residential building project. The worker initially was working an excavator, then climbed down from the excavator to cut a ten-inch water pipe with a lower-off saw. The noticed kicked back and struck the worker’s face. Co-workers called emergency providers, who transported the employee 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.
Within the first scenario, the worker suffered severe chemical burns. A face shield would have significantly reduced the chemical publicity, the extent of the chemical burns, and possibly might have prevented any ammonia from splashing on the employee’s face. Yes, the worker turned the wrong valve, but does that imply that the employer is absolved of all accountability for this incident? In fact not. The fact remains that the employer should provide staff filling ammonia nurse tanks with face shields, train staff to use the face shields correctly, and require them to make use of them when performing this task. Then they must continually and persistently enforce the face shield requirements. Doing so would have provided additional protection to the worker, even from the effects of the employee’s own actions.