Cover Your Assets

Cover Your Assets

Certain work environments require higher levels of protection from hazards, chemicals, particulates, dust, dirt and grime. For workers that may be exposed to hazardous material, it is so important to make sure they have the protection they need to avoid serious health risks. Aside from respiratory equipment, eye and ear protection, having the right disposable protective clothing available to workers is often required by OSHA.

Jobs that may require additional protections are:

  • Labs, construction sites, chemical plants, paint and body shops
  • Hazardous waste clean-up and disposal, asbestos removal or pesticide application
  • Site survey, rescue, spill mitigation, emergency monitoring and decontamination

Exposure to splashes, spills, contaminated surfaces, or aerosols in the workplace can lead to health issues and/or diseases of the skin including contact dermatitis and even cancer. When workers are exposed to hazards on a daily basis, they need the right body wear to stay healthy, productive and be able to continue the job for years to come.

The disposable clothing that is selected must be resistant to permeation, degradation, and penetration by the respective chemicals/hazards it will be exposed to. Once you identify the risks, you can tailor your PPE program.

  1. Level of protection: Decide what protection clothing must provide whether it be vapor, liquid-splash, particulate protection, or fire resistance.
  2. Full Body Protection: Do your workers need full body protection including hoods, boots, gloves and face shields? Would elastic wrists and ankles provide the best coverage?
  3. Design, Performance & Service Life: It is important to examine manufacturer data provided for chemical resistance
  4. Taped versus Serged Seams: Heat sealed tape seams typically provide a stronger seam and protection than the more economical serged, or sewn-seams.
  5. Read and understand the manufacturer’s technical manual:
    1. Inspection, maintenance, storage, training
    2. Benefits & risks
    3. Donning and doffing
    4. Decontamination
    5. Use

Disposable protective clothing is not just an option; in many environments it is absolutely required. Protective clothing should be part of the Employer’s Safety and Health program when there is a likelihood of an employee being exposed to chemicals or vapors that could impact their health. Personal protective equipment (PPE) should be selected and used that will protect employees from the potential hazards they may be exposed to. It’s important to regularly inspect the hazards of a job site, the level of protection may either increase or decrease based on the permissible exposure limits.

Engineering or administrative controls should be used as a first measure against exposure, but it doesn’t stop there. For the inexpensive cost of disposable protective clothing, you can rest easy knowing you are providing your workers with another layer of defense against the hazards of a job. And covering your assets at the same time.