Safety Topics – Workplace
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Safety Topics – Workplace is a post that can be applicable to any Workplace, but for our purposes here, I will be directing it toward Home Repair and Maintenance Projects. After all, the Home will be considered your Workplace for these types of Projects.
Regardless of where you are performing your tasks, there are some good, solid, general rules that can be applied. Working safely is just as important when working at Home as it is when working for an employer. Accidents are going to happen. That is just a fact of life, and they will happen everywhere and anywhere. While you can not always prevent them, you can reduce your chance for injury by working in a smart fashion.
Safety Equipment is not always as fashionable as some would prefer, but what would you rather be: less fashionable and safe or fashionable in a hospital. When you are working, it is always best to worry first about protecting the fragile human body than how you might look. It does not prove how tough you are by not wearing protective gear. It just shows how arrogant you are by thinking that nothing can hurt you. There is no shame in being safe. It is just the smart way to be.
Let’s explore some specifics . . .
When to Use an Assistant
There are many times when working on a certain Project that it makes good sense to have an Assistant. Some of these times are:
- When working anywhere that is not solid ground, like on a Ladder, Roof, or a steep slope, in order to help prevent a fall.
- When lifting something heavy in order to avoid a back injury.
- When taking down or carrying something that may not be heavy, but might be awkward for one person to handle, in order to help prevent an injury.
- When working with anything dangerous, like Electric, Gas, Flames, Chemicals, or a Chain Saw, in order to be near in case something goes wrong.
- Any time that there is risk of injury.
Having an Assistant will not only make the work go smoother, but will usually make it much safer. Never be too proud to ask for help in order to complete a task more safely. Your Assistant should be competent, able to help you in a time of need, and always carry a working Cell Phone.
Now, let’s take a look at specific Safety Gear designed for specific purposes.
Click on any of the links below each Safety Gear’s description to view a quality version and get the current price. Purchase the items that suit your needs.
To view other types of Tools, you can click on any of the other drop-down pages in my Top Menu, under: Home – Garden: Tools and Equipment List – An Overview
Carbon Monoxide & Smoke and Detectors
Carbon Monoxide Detectors help to warn you if there is this dangerous gas present in your Home, usually the result of a defective furnace. Smoke Detectors will set off an alarm if there is smoke present in your Home. Smoke is often an indication of a possible fire. Both types of Detectors are required by law in many states, yet always a good thing to have anywhere.
Fire Extinguishers are must have pieces of Safety Equipment for every Homeowner. There are (2) main types:
- Class A:B:C: An Extinguisher for any room type. Used for: wood, paper, plastics, flammable liquids and electrical equipment.
- Class K: An Extinguisher for cooking oil or grease fires in kitchens.
Both types should be present in your Home, and located where they are easily accessible to be quickly used in case if fire.
PPE – Personal Protection Equipment
Personal Protection Equipment commonly referred to as PPE includes any type of personal gear that is designed to protect the wearer from a specific harm. Included are items such as: Hard Hats, Safety Glasses, Ear Protection, Gloves, Safety Boots, etc.
Let’s discuss each specific type . . .
Head Protection comes in various types, with each specifically designed for a specific purpose. Hard Hats are designed to protect your head from falling objects. Use these when working with anything heavy overhead. Bump Caps are not as strong as Hard Hats, but are designed to protect your head from minor bumps from other objects. Use these when working with items that could potentially bump or bang your head. Painter’s Caps or Ball Caps, are for minor protection against unwanted items getting in your hair, such as, Paint, Insulation, etc.
Eye Protection is available in different styles. There are: Glasses, Goggles, and Face Masks. Glasses are designed to help protect your eyes from foreign objects entering them. They should be used anytime that there is any danger from a foreign object entering your eyes. Goggles are designed to protect your eyes even more, since they are formed to keep objects like sawdust, insulation, etc., from entering your eyes from any direction. They fit closely around your entire eye, and will better protect you than Glasses. Face Masks or Face Shields are designed to protect your entire face, not just your eyes. These will protect your entire face and eyes from Chemical splatters, as well as, from foreign objects. Welding Helmets are specifically designed for Welding, to protect your face from sparks and your eyes from welding burns. They come with various shades of darkening lenses depending on the type of Welding you are doing.
Ear Protection is designed to protect your ears from loud noises which could cause hearing loss. It is available in Plugs, which are inserted directly into your ear canal, and Muffs, which are worn over your ears. This protection should be used when working with any equipment that is loud in nature, such as, a Chain Saw or any type of Machine that is noisy.
Nose and Throat Protection
Nose & Throat Protection can be anything from a simple Dust Mask, which only protects against dust and minor debris, to a Respirator, which protects you from chemical fumes and vapors. A Dust Mask is sufficient to protect you when working with insulation, sawdust, and wallboard dust. The best chemical Respirators have interchangeable filters for specific uses. Use the type of filter that is best for the type of chemical that you are working with. For heavy mold issues, you should use a Respirator, not a Dust Mask.
Hand Protection is Gloves and Mitts that protect your hands while working on your Projects. They come in a variety of materials, each type is best suited for certain projects. Cotton Gloves are light duty, and are usually used for just keeping your hands clean, but offer little protection. Canvas Gloves are more heavy-duty and will protect you from splinters when working with wood, but are looser fitting and not suited to picking up small objects like Nails or Screws.
Leather Gloves will provide the best protection from thorns and sharp objects, but are usually a little looser fitting. Mechanic’s Gloves are the most versatile, not quite as strong as Leather Gloves, but a good all around Glove for most Projects. They are a tighter fitting Glove, so picking up Nails or Screws is easy.
There are Plastic and Vinyl Gloves which will keep your hands dry, and Welders Gloves and/or Mitts designed for the best protection against sparks when Welding. It is good to have a variety of Gloves on hand so that you can always use the right Gloves for each of your Projects.
Foot Protection is generally Work Boots. They can be leather, water-proof, or come with steel toes for heavy-duty Projects. Be aware that Steel-Toed Boots only have extra protection in the toe area. You still need to be careful not to step on any Nails or Screws protruding upward in a construction area. Always use some type of Work Boots when doing most Projects. Never wear flip-flops, and only wear tennis shoes when doing light-duty Projects.
Knee & Elbow Protection
Knee & Elbow Pads come in padded or hard shell models, depending on your needs. When it comes to Knee Pads, if you are kneeling on rocks, then the hard shell type is best. Otherwise, use the padded type as they are usually more comfortable and will sufficiently protect your knees. Elbow Pads should be worn when working in confined spaces, where bumping and/or bruising is likely.
Full Body Protection
Full Body Protection can be Rain Gear to keep you from getting wet while Power Washing, to a Welder’s Outfit, with a full-length Apron, or a Welding Jacket with Sleeves and Chaps, in order to protect your body from sparks and/or flames.
Always Stay Safe!
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