Face Shields Proper Utilization
Persons are not excellent and sometimes make mistakes. We take shortcuts, neglect how to do things, or change into distracted at occasions once we shouldn’t. In most features of our lives, these will not be things that have dire consequences. At work, however, surrounded by hazards, these types of errors can alter lives, even end them. So, regardless that human beings are not perfect, we need to make our safety programs as close to perfect as we can.
PPE Focus: Face Shields
Personal protective equipment (PPE) is a side of safety where individuals tend to make many errors, and for a variety of reasons. Often, we think that the mere wearing of PPE makes us resistant to injury. With as much emphasis as we place on eye protection and head protection, can we lose sight (no pun meant) of protecting our faces? Definitely, eye protection is vital, since eye accidents can lead to everlasting blindness. Equally important is head protection, preventing fatal head accidents one of the best that we can. Face accidents may not seem as significant a priority. They do not have the fast, everlasting, and probably deadly penalties of the others. With that said, although, an employer’s accountability is to protect all parts of their workers, together with their faces.
That accountability includes figuring out tasks where face shields should be used, providing face shields for workers to make use of, training them to use face shields correctly, and to right employees when face shields are used incorrectly or not used at all. The primary components are easy. Our employees will make mistakes. Correcting those mistakes and enforcing your company’s face shield requirements is an essential a part of an efficient PPE program. Unfortunately, too often, this facet of the PPE program shouldn’t be enforced till after an employee is injured.
Conditions to Use Face Shields
Consider the next conditions where face shields should have been used, and the results 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 improper valve, causing a pressure release in 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 putting in a water pipe at a multifamily residential building project. The worker initially was operating an excavator, then climbed down from the excavator to cut a 10-inch water pipe with a cut-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.
Within the first scenario, the worker suffered severe chemical burns. A face shield would have significantly reduced the chemical exposure, the extent of the chemical burns, and probably could have prevented any ammonia from splashing on the worker’s face. Sure, the worker turned the incorrect valve, but does that imply that the employer is absolved of all accountability for this incident? Of course not. The very fact remains that the employer ought to provide staff filling ammonia nurse tanks with face shields, train employees to make use of the face shields accurately, and require them to make use of them when performing this task. Then they have to continually and persistently 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.
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