Personal protective equipment, also known as PPE, is crucial for many employees who could potentially incur injuries as a result of working in hazardous environments, or working with dangerous equipment. Generally, personal protective equipment includes:
- Head protection (hard hats, helmets)
- Eye protection (goggles, glasses)
- Surgical masks
- Any other equipment that prevents injury
Personal protective equipment could also include equipment that protects someone from a threat, such as a lethal or non-lethal weapon, as well as equipment that can protect sensitive information, such as a credit card number.
Generally, however, PPE refers to on-the-job equipment that’s worn in hazardous situations. Personal protective equipment is necessary for employees in many professions, including people who work in the medical field, construction, welding, etc.
Personal protective equipment can also be worn by people in their homes and in non-hazardous work environments as a personal protective measure against infections. Such is the case with the recent novel COVID-19; personal protective equipment such as gloves and masks are being employed to prevent the further spread of infection.
Personal Protective Equipment Functions
Personal protective equipment serves several functions, from effectively preventing people, especially in the medical field, from contracting and spreading diseases, to ensuring that employees don’t get injured on the job.
In many states, face masks are now required anytime someone goes out into public, as the World Health Organization strongly recommends face coverings. Health experts across the board say that masks are effective in preventing the spread of the virus, and gloves are strongly recommended as well.
Fortunately, personal protective equipment is widely available, and is accessible for most people. Face masks are now available at no cost at many locations, as well as gloves. For people who require greater levels of personal protection, they’re provided with that equipment, as well as the proper training on how to use that equipment.
Other people may choose to invest in personal protective equipment not because it’s necessary for their profession, but because it gives them peace of mind and because it could prevent costly consequences.
Personal Protective Equipment: Types & Uses
Personal protective equipment can protect essentially any part of someone’s body, from their legs and feet, to hands, arms, head, eyes, and ears.
For example, mufflers or ear plugs should be worn when working with loud equipment. Mufflers are easily accessible, as well as simple to put on and take off.
Eye protection should be worn in hazardous environments such as a shooting range, when hot brass could potentially hit someone in the eye. For a police officer in training, both eye and ear protection will be necessary.
Other common types of personal protection include respiratory masks (for people in the medical field, as well as professions such as firefighting) as well as helmets, hard hats, body belts, and lanyards. There are several different types of respiratory masks, so it’s best to consult the specific instructions on use via the packaging to ensure it’s being used correctly.
Face mask lanyards can be used in the medical profession, as well as other work environments to hold a face mask when it needs to be set aside for specific tasks, such as talking on the phone.
Many of these types of personal protection equipment can prevent injury, while others will prevent infection. Personal protection equipment always includes proper instructions on use for those who are new to using it.
Personal Protective Equipment & Digital Pickpocketing
With technology rapidly advancing, and thieves becoming increasingly savvy in their methodology, the need for personal protective equipment that prevents digital theft has never been greater.
It used to be that people never had to worry about their personal information being stolen through their wallets or badges electronically, but technology has enabled people to do just that. Equipment that can prevent that information from being stolen is one of the smartest investments someone can make.
To prevent people from stealing information through a wallet, or a badge, RFID blocking technology has been created. RFID blocking wallets ensure that people can’t digitally pickpocket your card information, while RFID blocking badge holders prevent people from stealing your credentials that will allow them to get into buildings they shouldn’t be able to access.
The Need For Personal Protective Equipment
With the advent of COVID-19, personal protective equipment has never been so necessary, and it’s never been in such great demand. Face masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, and even regular household cleaning items are going quickly. Some people have even taken to making their own masks, as well as their own hand sanitizer.
For the safety of everyone, personal protective equipment should be utilized as frequently as possible, as it can dramatically reduce and prevent COVID-19 cases, as well as protect people who are working with dangerous equipment or in dangerous environments.