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How does protective gear prevent workplace injuries?

Many Connecticut workers are employed in fields that require the use of protective gear. Personal protective equipment is essential to prevent or minimize serious injuries at work.

For example, construction workers use hard hats to protect themselves from falling debris and other accidents. Workers whose jobs involve the use of toxic chemicals may need to wear gloves and protective goggles, among other safety gear. Other jobs may necessitate the use of earplugs or muffs, vests, coveralls or full body suits. An individual job responsibilities and potential hazards will determine what type of protective gear may be necessary. OSHA standards regulate what gear may be required in particular industries, as well.

OSHA regulations require employers to not only provide essential protective gear to their employees, but also to train their employees in how to use the equipment. Employers must provide training regarding when personal protective equipment is necessary, what type of equipment is necessary and how to wear and adjust the equipment to properly protect against potential on-the-job injuries. Protective equipment must fit workers properly to ensure safety on the job. It is also essential for employers to train workers regarding the limitations of their protective gear, as such equipment cannot protect against all injuries, as well as the proper maintenance and care of safety equipment.

If you have suffered a workplace injury due to an employer's failure to provide adequate personal protective equipment or associated training, you may want to discuss with an attorney your legal rights and options. Under OSHA regulations, workers have the right to a safe workplace and this includes the availability of proper protective equipment.

Source: osha.gov, "Personal Protective Equipment," accessed Aug. 19, 2016

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