Persons are not excellent and often make mistakes. We take shortcuts, overlook how you can do things, or develop into distracted at times when we shouldn’t. In most elements of our lives, these should not things which have dire consequences. At work, nonetheless, surrounded by hazards, these types of errors can alter lives, even end them. So, despite the fact that human beings usually are not excellent, 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 where people tend to make many errors, and for a wide range of reasons. Typically, we think that the mere wearing of PPE makes us proof against injury. With as much emphasis as we place on eye protection and head protection, will we lose sight (no pun meant) of protecting our faces? Definitely, eye protection is vital, since eye accidents can lead to permanent blindness. Equally vital is head protection, preventing fatal head accidents the very best that we can. Face accidents may not appear as significant a priority. They don’t have the quick, everlasting, and doubtlessly deadly penalties of the others. With that said, though, an employer’s accountability is to protect all parts of their employees, together with their faces.
That responsibility consists of 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 employees when face shields are used incorrectly or not used at all. The first parts are easy. Our workers will make mistakes. Correcting these errors and imposing your company’s face shield requirements is an essential part of an efficient PPE program. Sadly, too typically, this side of the PPE program isn’t enforced until after an worker is injured.
Situations to Use Face Shields
Consider the following conditions where face shields should have been used, and the implications for the injured workers and their employers.
An worker was filling ammonia nurse tanks from a bulk plant. The worker was distracted while closing the valves, and mistakenly turned the incorrect valve, causing a pressure release in the line. The discharge of anhydrous ammonia splashed on the employee’s face. The employee was hospitalized for chemical burns on and around the face.
An employee was installing a water pipe at a multifamily residential construction project. The worker initially was working an excavator, then climbed down from the excavator to chop a ten-inch water pipe with a lower-off saw. The noticed kicked back and struck the worker’s face. Co-workers called emergency companies, who transported the worker to the hospital. The worker was admitted to the hospital and treated for facial lacerations that prolonged from underneath the left eye to underneath the jaw.
In 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 probably might have prevented any ammonia from splashing on the employee’s face. Sure, the worker turned the incorrect valve, however does that mean that the employer is absolved of all duty for this incident? After all not. The fact stays that the employer ought to provide staff filling ammonia nurse tanks with face shields, train staff to use the face shields correctly, and require them to use them when performing this task. Then they must continually and consistently 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.