Face Shields Proper Utilization

May 11, 2020 23:46

Persons are not perfect and sometimes make mistakes. We take shortcuts, overlook the right way to do things, or turn out to be distracted at times when we shouldn’t. In most elements of our lives, these are usually not things that have dire consequences. At work, nevertheless, surrounded by hazards, these types of mistakes can alter lives, even finish them. So, regardless that human beings aren’t excellent, we need to make our safety programs as close to good as we can.

PPE Focus: Face Shields

Personal protective equipment (PPE) is a side of safety where folks tend to make many mistakes, and for quite a lot of reasons. Often, we think that the mere wearing of PPE makes us proof against injury. With as much emphasis as we place on eye protection and head protection, do we lose sight (no pun intended) of protecting our faces? Definitely, eye protection is essential, since eye accidents can lead to everlasting blindness. Equally important is head protection, preventing deadly head injuries one of the best that we can. Face accidents might not seem as significant a priority. They don’t have the immediate, everlasting, and potentially fatal consequences of the others. With that said, though, an employer’s duty is to protect all parts of their workers, including their faces.

That accountability contains figuring out tasks where face shields ought to be used, providing face shields for workers to make use of, training them to make use of face shields correctly, and to appropriate staff when face shields are used incorrectly or not used at all. The first components are easy. Our workers will make mistakes. Correcting these errors and implementing your organization’s face shield requirements is an essential a part of an effective PPE program. Sadly, too usually, this aspect of the PPE program is not enforced till after an worker is injured.

Conditions to Use Face Shields

Consider the following conditions where face shields ought to have been used, and the consequences for the injured workers and their employers.

An employee was filling ammonia nurse tanks from a bulk plant. The worker was distracted while closing the valves, and mistakenly turned the wrong valve, causing a pressure launch within the line. The release of anhydrous ammonia splashed on the employee’s face. The worker was hospitalized for chemical burns on and across the face.

An employee was installing a water pipe at a multifamily residential development project. The employee initially was working an excavator, then climbed down from the excavator to chop a ten-inch water pipe with a lower-off saw. The saw kicked back and struck the employee’s face. Co-workers called emergency providers, who transported the employee 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.

In the first scenario, the employee suffered severe chemical burns. A face shield would have significantly reduced the chemical exposure, the extent of the chemical burns, and possibly could have prevented any ammonia from splashing on the worker’s face. Yes, the worker turned the improper valve, however does that imply that the employer is absolved of all responsibility for this incident? In fact not. The actual fact stays that the employer ought to provide employees filling ammonia nurse tanks with face shields, train workers to use the face shields correctly, and require them to use them when performing this task. Then they need to continually and persistently enforce the face shield requirements. Doing so would have provided additional protection to the worker, even from the effects of the worker’s own actions.

May 11, 2020 23:46
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