UK: Government agency revises employers' guide to personal protection equipment
A revised version of guidance designed to help employers such as car and components makers, dealers and independent repairers, who supply and use personal protective equipment (PPE) at work, to meet their duties under UK law has been published by the government's Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
The guidance, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) at Work Regulations 1992 (L25), which was first published in 1992, has now been updated to reflect changes to the regulations, developments in PPE and to clarify guidance queries commonly received by HSE.
The regulations require PPE; for example, safety helmets, gloves, eye protection and high-visibility clothing, to be supplied and used at work wherever there are risks to workers' health and safety that cannot be adequately controlled in other ways.
The Regulations require PPE to be properly assessed before use to ensure its suitability for the work being done; maintained and stored properly; provided with adequate instruction on how to use it safely; and worn correctly by the user.
The first section of the booklet sets out the regulations, followed by information on how to comply with their requirements. The second part provides details on the different types of PPE available, the types of hazards that may require PPE to be worn, followed by advice on its correct selection, use and maintenance. This section now also features information on the selection and safe use of personal fall protection equipment when working at heights.
HSE has also reissued A Short Guide to the Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations, a free leaflet aimed at providing employers with a brief summary of the law's main requirements. In particular, the guide includes a short synopsis of common workplace hazards and types of PPE that can be used to prevent workers' exposure. The leaflet also provides tips on ensuring PPE is adequately maintained and workers are provided with sufficient training so that it is properly used.