The Importance of PPE

“If it wasnae for your wellies, where would you be?”

For anyone who remembers the mid-1970s, (we’re showing our age now), you’ll remember how Billy Connolly posed this musical question, and how the song stresses the importance of wearing wellies for all sorts of professions, and protective reasons.

This means that wellies actually constitute PPE!

This song, in itself, should convey the importance of PPE at work, but for anyone not yet convinced it should be noted that as an employer, you have a duty to provide and enforce the use of PPE (personal protective equipment).

PPE is any piece of equipment that protects someone against health or safety risks at work. This includes safety helmets, gloves, eye protection, high-visibility clothing, safety footwear, safety harnesses, and yes, even wellies! RPE or respiratory protective equipment is also included.

But why is PPE so important?

Workplace safety should include providing instructions, procedures, training, and supervision to ensure a responsible and safe working environment. But even after the implementation of all these safety measures, some hazards may still remain. It is for this reason that PPE is then required to reduce the risk further.

As an employer you should ensure that:

  • PPE is used only once all other safety systems and controls have been implemented
  • where required, you provide PPE to your employees free of charge
  • you choose the equipment carefully, and ensure your employees are trained to use it properly, and know how to detect and report any faults

Remember PPE must be the last point of protection. As an employer, you should implement all other safety measures before looking to PPE to protect those who work for you. 

This is because PPE is subject to human error and:

  • only protects the person wearing it.
  • only protects them if it is the right item, for the right job.
  • only protects them if it is kept in good condition and it fits well.

If you need help with PPE for your employees, or any other aspect of health and safety in your business, we’d be more than happy to help so get in touch.

“If it wasnae for your wellies, where would you be?”