2017-05-01 12:00 - Messages

Personal protective equipment and women

Guidance for workplace representatives on ensuring it is a safe fit
Despite a legal duty on bosses to provide the correct Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to their staff free of charge, only 3 in 10 women (29%) told a survey that the PPE they wear to keep them safe at work is specifically designed for women.
Women responding to the survey work in a range of jobs, including in the emergency services, retail and manufacturing, engineering and scientific research.
Many reported that ill-fitting PPE which isn't designed to protect women workers gets in the way of them doing their job safely. For example, the wrong shoes or overalls can increase the chances of tripping, and safety harnesses, belts and body armour can rub against the skin if they do not accommodate breasts or hips.
The report also reveals:
- More than half of women (57%) responding to the survey said that their PPE sometimes or significantly hampered their work – including 95% of women working in emergency services.
- More than 2 in 5 (41%) women said that the protective trousers that were given to them were inappropriate.
- More than 1 in 3 (35%) found their overalls unsuitable for carrying out their work duties.

Source: https://www.tuc.org.uk/sites/default/files/PPEandwomenguidance.pdf

Occupational Fatalities Resulting from Falls in the Oil and Gas Extraction Industry, United States, 2005–2014

During 2003–2013, fatality rates for oil and gas extraction workers decreased for all causes of death except those associated with fall events, which increased 2% annually during 2003–2013 (1). To better understand risk factors for these events, CDC examined fatal fall events in the oil and gas extraction industry during 2005–2014 using data from case investigations conducted by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Sixty-three fatal falls were identified, accounting for 15% of all fatal events. Among fatal falls, 33 (52%) workers fell from a height of >30 feet (9 meters), and 22 (35%) fell from the derrick board, the elevated work platform located in the derrick (structure used to support machinery on a drilling rig). Fall fatalities occurred most frequently when drilling rigs were being assembled or disassembled at the well site (rigging up or rigging down) (14; 22%) or when workers were removing or inserting drill pipe into the wellbore (14; 22%). Measures that target derrickmen and workers engaged in assembling and disassembling drilling rigs (rigging up and down) could reduce falls in this industry. Companies should annually update their fall protection plans and ensure effective fall prevention programs are in place for workers at highest risk for falls, including providing trainings on proper use, fit, and inspection of personal protective equipment.

Source: https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/66/wr/mm6616a2.htm?s_cid=mm6616a2_e

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