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Toolbox Talk - Week 51: PPE – General - IT ONLY WORKS IF YOU WEAR IT!

PPE - It only works if you wear it - 2021.12
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PPE – General


This talk discusses the importance of proper use of

personal protective equipment, or PPE, in the


Materials to have on hand:

  • Company policy on PPE use

  • PPE used at your facility

Items for attendees to consider during talk:

  • Have you a reason for not wearing your


  • What PPE are you required to use at our facility?

  • What should you do if your PPE is uncomfortable?


Some hazards at work simply can’t be eliminated

completely by engineering controls or

substitutions. That’s when the company needs to

provide you with personal protective equipment—

or PPE. Sounds simple—yet, is it?

Think of some reasons you or others have had for

not wearing your PPE: “The glasses are

uncomfortable.” “The shoes pinch my toes.” “This

hard hat is too heavy.”

The type of equipment required to provide the

needed protection depends on the particular type

of work being done. In areas where flying particles

are likely to be found, goggles need to be used to

protect the eyes. Similarly, the kind of protection

safety shoes are supposed to provide determines

what type of shoe is appropriate. In other words, it

must be slipproof, nonconductive, high-topped, or

steel-toe. And the type of safety helmet to be

worn depends on the type of hazard the wearer is

likely to encounter. In some jobs, hard hats may be

adequate; in

many they are not.

You should conduct a hazard analysis for every

job—to make sure all the factors in our work that

would call for requiring PPE are identified. The

company will supply all the necessary protective

equipment to protect you from the safety and

health hazards identified in the hazard analysis.

We want you to be safe at work, and your PPE is

designed to protect you, but it only functions if you

wear it. If your equipment is uncomfortable or you

have some other concerns about using the PPE,

please let your supervisor know immediately. Don’t

begin a task that requires the use of PPE without it.

If your PPE is uncomfortable, it probably doesn’t fit

properly. The company is here to help you because

we want you to go home safe every day. We will

work with you to find the correct fit for the

equipment you need. You can try out several

different types to see if there is one that feels

better. But sometimes it just takes some time to

get used to wearing the equipment.

It’s also very important to inspect your PPE before

each time you use it. Don’t use any equipment that

is damaged. And be sure to report any damaged,

lost, or worn out PPE to your supervisor. Your

safety is our priority!

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Mar 21
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