Five Types of Safety Equipment You Can’t Do Without
Safety too often gets regarded as something that’s simply required by the government. In some workplaces, it’s (dangerously) regarded as something that employees can shrug off, as long as you don’t get caught. But, it’s time to remember that certain pieces of safety equipment can be lifesaving. It’s not simply a requirement; it’s an investment in your well-being.
Hoists aren’t strictly used as safety equipment. Well-managed and properly maintained hoists qualify, however. Any hoist will keep you from pulling your back muscles and injuring yourself. A hoist with a well-maintained sling will ensure that whatever you’re lifting doesn’t end up falling on top of you. Be sure that all of your lifting equipment is properly inspected before use.
Though the lack of a mask might not kill you immediately, it may kill you eventually. Asbestos dust, for example, is small enough that you can’t see it, but can cause mesothelioma, a highly aggressive cancer that affects the lining around the lungs. It’s most often found in insulation that was put in houses as recently as 10 years ago. Asbestos was also commonly found in welding rods and welding safety gear. Though newer safety gear (and masks) are a standard part of welding, many home contractors will need to remember to wear masks if they’re exposing insulation at all.
3. Fire extinguishers
Even if you’re just watching a line in a factory, it’s important to know where the fire extinguishers are. Many factories contain highly explosive chemicals and substances, and a little flicker could turn deadly quickly. Memorize their locations even if you’re not working with anything flammable so you’ll be able to react quickly and potentially help co-workers.
4. Safety Clothing (PPE)
Walking into a dangerous situation without the right gear can lead to potentially traumatic results. Learn which gear is right for each job you do. The face shield you wear when working with wood isn’t going to be as effective as also wearing safety goggles when working with metal. Saws and other cutting tools often require Kevlar fabric that’s designed to stop blades before they reach your body. Helmets are required whenever there’s a potential for head injury.
Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Unlike their relatively more popular counterparts, carbon monoxide detectors are rarely given a second thought once they’re installed. Factories should have a set date and time when they’re checked twice a year, at minimum. If it’s helpful, inspect them at the same time as fire and smoke alarms. Be sure to also check backup batteries.
Factory work can be dangerous. There’s nothing that can completely mitigate the dangers of working around heavy objects and highly reactive chemicals. There are, however, a number of things you can do to make sure that you’re doing everything you can to stay safe. Check and double check that you have this lifesaving equipment before you work.