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.


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.


Protection respiratoire. Réaliser des essais d'ajustement

Lors du processus de sélection d'un appareil de protection respiratoire, il est indispensable de s'assurer que le modèle choisi est adapté à son porteur en réalisant un essai d'ajustement.
Cette brochure décrit l'objectif des essais d'ajustement, les différentes méthodes d'essai existantes, le rôle de l'opérateur d'essai d'ajustement. Elle précise les critères permettant de considérer l'étanchéité au visage comme satisfaisante.


Évaluation d’un système de corde d’assurance horizontale, de connecteurs d’ancrage et de fermes contreventées comme structure d’accueil lors de la pose de toitures résidentielles

La pose de fermes de toit présente particulièrement des risques et des dangers de chute pour les travailleurs de la construction parce qu'elle se fait en hauteur et dans des conditions difficiles. Les travailleurs, en équilibre précaire sur la charpente, risquent de perdre l'équilibre et/ou de chuter lors de la pose des fermes. Pour protéger ses travailleurs contre les chutes de hauteur lors de la pose de fermes, de contreplaqués et de bardeaux, un entrepreneur de construction domiciliaire a récemment développé un système de corde d'assurance horizontale (SCAH) constitué de deux potelets en aluminium et d'un câble en acier en utilisant la toiture comme structure d'accueil. Le SCAH, quoique fonctionnel, est lourd et peu convivial, ce qui freine son utilisation dans les chantiers. Cependant, des essais préliminaires effectués sur un toit pour lequel les travaux étaient complétés, ont montré que ce système présentait un potentiel comme composante d'un système antichute. Ainsi, à la demande de l'ASP Construction, l'Institut de recherche Robert-Sauvé en santé et en sécurité du travail (IRSST) a entrepris la présente étude qui visait, dans un premier temps, à évaluer le SCAH pour le rendre efficace, convivial et fiable en améliorant sa méthode d'installation et en réduisant son poids. Dans un second temps, l'étude avait comme objectif de vérifier la résistance des fermes de toit contreventées comme structure d'accueil d'un cordon d'assujettissement d'un travailleur, du SCAH et des connecteurs d'ancrage certifiés CAN/CSA Z259.15 – Connecteurs d'ancrage.


Factors affecting fall severity from a ladder

Impact of climbing direction, gloves, gender and adaptation
Ladder falls cause many fatal injuries. The factors that affect whether a ladder perturbation leads to a fall are not well understood. This study quantified the effects of several factors on a person's ability to recover from a ladder perturbation. Thirty-five participants each experienced six unexpected ladder missteps, for three glove conditions (bare hands, high friction, low friction) and two climbing directions (ascent, descent). Fall severity was increased during ladder descent (p < 0.001). Gloves did not affect fall severity. Females compared to males had greater fall severity during ascent (p < 0.001) and descent (p = 0.018). During ascent, females had greater fall severity during the second perturbation but similar fall severity to males during the other perturbations. Additional protection may be needed when descending a ladder. Also, females may benefit from targeted interventions like training. This study does not suggest that gloves are effective for preventing ladder falls.

Source: Pliner, E. M., Seo, N. J., & Beschorner, K. E. (2017). Applied Ergonomics, 60, 163-170.

Market surveillance of FFP3 disposable respirators

Filtering Facepieces (FFPs) are disposable Respiratory Protective Equipment (RPE) for protection against dusts, particles and aerosols. They are often referred to as 'disposable dust masks', are widely used, and generally require no cleaning or maintenance. They are available in three classes: FFP1, FFP2 and FFP3, with the higher numbers corresponding to better filtering efficiency. As with all types of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) sold in the UK, they must comply with the EU PPE Directive 89/686/EEC. It is the responsibility of the manufacturer or person placing the RPE on the European single market to ensure compliance. For FFPs this is invariably achieved by compliance with the harmonised standard EN149:2001+A1:2009.
This report describes market surveillance testing of samples of ten FFP3 respirator models from ten different manufacturers that are available on the UK market. The aim was to determine whether each sample meets a range of health and safety performance requirements required by the standard.


Use of moulded hearing protectors by child care workers

An interventional pilot study
Background: Employees of a multi-site institution for children and adolescents started to wear moulded hearing protectors (MHPs) during working hours, as they were suffering from a high level of noise exposure. It was agreed with the institutional physician and the German Institution for Statutory Accident Insurance and Prevention in the Health and Welfare Services (BGW) that this presented an opportunity to perform a scientific study to investigate potential beneficial effects on risk of burnout and subjective noise exposure at work when child care workers wear MHPs.
Methods: This was an intervention study which compared the initial values with those after a follow-up of 12 months. All teaching child care workers employed by the multi-site institution were offered the opportunity to take part. Forty-five (45) employees in 16 institutions participated. The subjects were provided with personally adapted MHPs and documented the periods of wear in a diary. At the start and end of the intervention, the subjects had to answer a questionnaire related to subjective noise exposure and burnout risk. In parallel, employees were surveyed who had not taken part in the intervention.
Results: Thirty-three (33) subjects took part in the follow-up after 12 months (follow-up rate 73 %). The median period of wear of MHPs was 34.6 h. During the period of observation, the mean subjective noise exposure increased by 2.7 %, and mean burnout risk by 2.5 scale points (baseline: 55.2, follow-up 57.7). Neither difference was statistically significant. 67 % of the participants reported that they were still capable of fulfilling their teaching duties when wearing the MHPs. In the reference group without the intervention, the increase in burnout risk was 3.9 points, which was even less favourable (baseline: 50.6, follow-up: 54.5).
Conclusions: Within the working environment of the child care workers, wearing MHPs did not reduce subjective noise exposure or burnout risk; the satisfaction of the study subjects with wearing MHPs decreased over time. There were however signs that the level of stress increased over time and that this might have been alleviated in the intervention group by wearing MHPs.

Source: Koch, P., Stranzinger, J., Kersten, J. F., & Nienhaus, A. (2016). Journal of Occupational Medicine and Toxicology, 11(1), 50.

Prévention des risques liés aux pesticides chez les producteurs de pommes

État des lieux et actions à mener pour une meilleure protection individuelle
Au Québec, on dénombrait près de 29 000 exploitations qui procuraient 125 000 emplois à des travailleurs du secteur de la production agricole (2007). Alors que les pesticides ont pour fonction de lutter contre les parasites des cultures, ils peuvent avoir des effets, à court et long termes, sur la santé des producteurs qui y sont exposés, majoritairement par la peau. Leur utilisation est donc encadrée et des mesures de prévention du risque sont proposées, au nombre desquelles les équipements de protection individuelle (ÉPI) jouent un rôle essentiel. Dans un contexte de quasi-absence de données sur les maladies et lésions professionnelles relatives aux agents causaux « pesticides » au Québec, le message de prévention actuel ne donne pas tous les résultats attendus. Ainsi, cette étude pluridisciplinaire présente un état des lieux sur la prévention par les ÉPI utilisés contre les pesticides en agriculture, dresse un portrait des contextes et pratiques de travail de la production de pommes québécoise, et définit une liste préliminaire de pesticides dont il faudrait se protéger, prioritairement dans ce secteur. Des pistes d'action sont finalement suggérées et discutées.


Évaluation d’une politique obligatoire de vaccination contre l’influenza ou de port d’un masque pour les travailleurs de la santé

L'objectif d'une telle politique est de réduire le fardeau de l'influenza transmis par les travailleurs non vaccinés aux patients et de prévenir les éclosions dans les milieux de soins. Les prémisses sous-jacentes à cette politique sont que ce fardeau est important et que la vaccination des travailleurs contre l'influenza ou le port du masque le réduira substantiellement. Il est difficile d'obtenir, sur une base volontaire, des couvertures vaccinales de plus de 70 % chez les travailleurs des hôpitaux de soins aigus, alors que les politiques de vaccination obligatoire ou de VoM permettent d'atteindre et même dépasser ce niveau de couverture vaccinale.


Z94.3.1-16 - Guideline for selection, use, and care of eye and face protectors

This is the second edition of CSA Z94.3.1, Guideline for selection, use, and care of eye and face protectors. It supersedes the previous edition, published in 2009 under the title Selection, use, and care of protective eyewear.
The Guideline covers the selection, use, and care of eye and face protectors and provides advice for the proper selection of eye and face protection for specific hazardous activities.
 Major changes to this edition include the following:
 a) added terminology on compliance and certification of eye and face protectors (see Table 1);
 b) revised the laser classes in accordance with the current edition of ANSI Z136.1 (see Clause 6.1);
 c) added allowance for arc flash protectors and requirements that apply to arc flash protective equipment (see Clause 6.2);
 d) updated the lens materials and properties (see Clause 7);
 e) added guidelines for safety eyewear fit testing (see Clause 8); and
 f) added two new hazard types, Hazard Types I (lasers) and J (electric arc flash) in the selection of protectors for each hazard type (see Clauses 12 and 13).


Mesure de l’efficacité des gants de protection contre les nanoparticules dans des conditions simulant leur utilisation en milieu de travail

Cette étude s'est articulée autour de trois grandes parties correspondant aux objectifs définis en début de projet. Tout d'abord, il a permis de concevoir un banc d'essai pouvant appliquer des déformations triaxiales dynamiques sur les gants de protection, simulant leur utilisation en milieu de travail. En parallèle, un protocole d'échantillonnage rigoureux a été développé afin de minimiser les contaminations éventuelles. Les mesures des concentrations en nanoparticules dans la solution d'échantillonnage ont été réalisées par spectrométrie de masse, une technique ayant des limites de détection inférieures à une partie par milliard (ppb). La deuxième grande partie du projet a été consacrée à l'acquisition de connaissances sur les mécanismes de pénétration et la cinétique de transport des nanoparticules à travers les matériaux de gants. Plusieurs phénomènes mécaniques ou physico-chimiques ont été reconnus comme étant responsables de la perte d'intégrité des échantillons, favorisant ainsi le passage des nanoparticules.
Enfin, à la suite des résultats obtenus précédemment, la dernière partie contient les recommandations émises quant au choix des gants de protection en cas de risque d'exposition aux nanoparticules.


Falls from height in the construction industry

A critical review of the scientific literature
Globally, falls from height (FFH) are a substantial public health jeopardy and are among the important leading causes of serious and fatal injuries for construction workers. A comprehensive understanding of the causal factors in FFH incidents is urgently required; however, the literature appears to lack a scientific review of FFH. In this study, 297 articles that contribute to the topic of fall incidents were reviewed. Seventy-five (75) articles met the criteria for relevance and were aggregated in a database to support a critical review. A synthesis of macro-variables approach was adopted rather than a structured meta-analysis. Such a method of analysis provides the flexibility to combine previous studies' findings. The most common factors associated with FFH are risky activities, individual characteristics, site conditions, organizational characteristics, agents (scaffolds/ladders) and weather conditions. The outcomes contributed to identifying the most significant research area for safety enhancement by improving engineering facilities, behaviour investigations and FFH prevention methods.

Source: Nadhim, E. A., Hon, C., Xia, B., Stewart, I., & Fang, D. (2016). International journal of environmental research and public health, 13(7), 638.

Ergonomic evaluation of protective clothing for earthquake disaster search and rescue team members

Purpose: The ergonomic performance of protective clothing for earthquake disaster search and rescue team members is significant for its protective performance.
Design/methodology/approach: By experimental simulations of the rescue tasks, an evaluation system for the protective clothing in both static and dynamic conditions was designed and established in this study. In static evaluation, motion capture system was used to measure the ranges of motions. The mobility was analyzed by the comprehensive evaluation method. In dynamic experiments, three types of rescue tasks were simulated for ergonomic evaluation. The results were analyzed based on the multi-levels joint evaluation method.
Findings: It was shown that the established evaluation system could meet well with the requirements of the ergonomic evaluation.
Originality/value: Fuzzy comprehensive evaluation method is an effective tool in ergonomic evaluation of clothing. The newly designed coverall and suit are of better ergonomic performance compared with the in-service clothing.

Source: Xue Lin ,  Lina Zhai ,  Mengying Zhang ,  Yunyi Wang ,  Jun Li , (2016). International Journal of Clothing Science and Technology, Vol. 28 Iss: 6.

Systèmes d'ancrage pour la protection contre les chutes

Ce guide se veut un outil d'information pour les employeurs de la construction qui auront à fabriquer, à installer ou à utiliser des systèmes d'ancrage pour la protection contre les chutes conformes à la nouvelle règlementation du Code de sécurité pour les travaux de construction (RLRQ, chap. S-2.1, r.4).?


Explorations of Design Factors for Developments of Protective Gardening Gloves

The purpose of this study was to identify important design factors for protective gardening gloves and consider possible design features for these gloves. A mixed methods procedure was used involving market research, an online survey, and a focus group. Ten design factors of protective gardening gloves were identified: skin cut and puncture protection, dirt and insect protection, UV ray protection, water resistance/waterproofness, dexterity, comfort of movement, breathability, ease of donning and doffing, durability, and ease of care. Potential consumers' preferred design features for each design factor were investigated through the online survey and focus group. Designers can apply the identified preferred design features in this study as guidelines to satisfy each design factor so that designs can be more easily accepted by consumers. The results of this research can be beneficial for designers in the development process of protective gardening gloves and ultimately benefit gardeners.

Source: Helen S. Koo, Karla P. Teel, Siyuan Han. Clothing and Textiles Research Journal. October 2016, vol. 34, no. 4, p. 257-271.

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