Face Shields Proper Usage
PPE Focus: Face Shields
Personal protective equipment (PPE) is a side of safety the place people are inclined 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 a lot emphasis as we place on eye protection and head protection, do we lose sight (no pun supposed) of protecting our faces? Actually, eye protection is important, since eye injuries can lead to permanent blindness. Equally important is head protection, preventing fatal head injuries one of the best that we can. Face accidents could not appear as significant a priority. They don't have the immediate, everlasting, and probably deadly consequences of the others. With that said, though, an employer’s responsibility is to protect all components of their workers, including their faces.
That responsibility includes figuring out tasks where face shields needs to be used, providing face shields for workers to use, training them to make use of face shields accurately, and to right workers when face shields are used incorrectly or not used at all. The primary parts are easy. Our staff will make mistakes. Correcting these errors and implementing your organization’s face shield requirements is an essential a part of an effective PPE program. Unfortunately, too typically, this aspect of the PPE program isn't enforced till after an worker is injured.
Conditions to Use Face Shields
Consider the following situations where face shields ought to have been used, and the implications for the injured workers and their employers.
An employee was filling ammonia nurse tanks from a bulk plant. The employee was distracted while closing the valves, and mistakenly turned the improper valve, inflicting a pressure release within the line. The release of anhydrous ammonia splashed on the worker’s face. The worker was hospitalized for chemical burns on and across the face.
An worker was putting in a water pipe at a multifamily residential construction project. The employee initially was operating an excavator, then climbed down from the excavator to chop a ten-inch water pipe with a cut-off saw. The noticed kicked back and struck the employee’s face. Co-workers called emergency providers, who transported the worker to the hospital. The employee was admitted to the hospital and treated for facial lacerations that extended from underneath the left eye to underneath the jaw.
Within the first scenario, the worker suffered critical chemical burns. A face shield would have significantly reduced the chemical publicity, the extent of the chemical burns, and presumably might have prevented any ammonia from splashing on the employee’s face. Yes, the worker turned the incorrect valve, however does that mean that the employer is absolved of all accountability for this incident? After all not. The fact remains that the employer should provide workers filling ammonia nurse tanks with face shields, train employees to use the face shields accurately, and require them to use them when performing this task. Then they have to frequently and consistently implement the face shield requirements. Doing so would have provided additional protection to the employee, even from the effects of the worker’s own actions.