Machinery Safety Information

OSHA Safety Regulations for Industrial Machines and Equipment

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Overview

When working with machinery in a manufacturing facility, Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) refers to protective clothing, hard hats, goggles, or other gear designed to protect the wearer's body from injury by workplace hazards (such as electrical and mechanical hazards). Examples of PPE include:
  • Eye protection -- Safety glasses, goggles, or face shields.
  • Head protection -- Hard Hats
  • Ear protection -- ear plugs
  • Foot protection -- steel-toe boots
  • Hand protection -- gloves
  • Arc Flash protection -- arc flash suits


  • Hazard Assessement

    Personal Protective Equipment provide one layer of protection against many of the hazards associated with industrial machines and equipment.

    The actual PPE required varies for each and every factory. It is determined by the employer, based on their assessment of the hazards within the worksite. The requirement to determine the necessary PPE and to enforce the use of PPE falls entirely on the employers. As stated by OSHA:

    OSHA Title 29 CFR 1910.132(d)(1)
    The employer shall assess the workplace to determine if hazards are present, or are likely to be present, which necessitate the use of personal protective equipment (PPE). If such hazards are present, or likely to be present, the employer shall:
    i)        Select, and have each affected employee use, the types of PPE that will protect the affected employee from the hazards identified in the hazard assessment;
    ii)        Communicate selection decisions to each affected employee; and,
    iii)         Select PPE that properly fits each affected employee.


    A Written Document Must be Completed

    OSHA requires that a written document be generated to "prove" the hazard assessment was properly done:

    OSHA Title 29 CFR 1910.132(d)(2)
    The employer shall verify that the required workplace hazard assessment has been performed through a written certification that identifies the workplace evaluated; the person certifying that the evaluation has been performed; the date(s) of the hazard assessment; and, which identifies the document as a certification of hazard assessment.

    OSHA requires several things from the written hazard assessment:
  • It must be written.
  • The name of the person who certifies the hazzard assessment but be written on the document.
  • The document must be dated.
  • The document must identify iteself as the certification of hazard assessment.


  • Additional Requirements

    For many types of PPE (e.g. eye protection, ear protection), OSHA further refines their rules specifically for that type of protection. For example, according to OSHA, the requirement for Eye and Face Protection is as follows:

    OSHA Title 29 CFR Part 1910.133 Eye and Face Protection
    The employer shall ensure that each affected employee uses appropriate eye or face protection when exposed to eye or face hazards from flying particles, molten metal, liquid chemicals, acids or caustic liquids, chemical gases or vapors, or potentially injurious light radiation.


    Further Information and Links

    The actual OSHA's regulations on PPE can be found at 1910.132 - 138 at the following link: OSHA Regulations

    More information on Hazard Assessments can be found at Hazard Assessments

    The ANSI standard that covers general PPE is ANSI/NFPA 70E -- Personal Protective Equipment. This is an excellent reference.


    For a 1-day training class on PPE and Hazzards Assessments, held at your facility, see OSHA Hazard Assessment Training

    Training & Seminars

    OSHA PPE Training

    OSHA Training

    Safety Training
  • Advanced, high-level training
  • Customized to your machines
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  • Taught by a machine safety expert


  • The most useful links, and the most helpful info for those using machinery and automated equipment.

    There is a wealth of information within this site...


    Useful Links

    OSHA Regulations: OSHA's complete set of regulations for general industry.

    OSHA App: An iPhone app with all OSHA Regulations.

    Expert Witness: An Expert in Machines, Manufacturing, and Automated Equipment.