The 5 Most Important Pieces of Safety Gear Used at Metal Works

At Metal Works, we don’t just talk about our workers’ health and safety—we live it from head to toe—literally! See what we mean: here are the top 5 pieces of safety gear (aka PPE or Personal Protective Equipment) used by our workers.

5) Safety Headwear

Hard hats (and sometimes bump caps, can be used to protect against bangs and scrapes but not falling or flying objects) are worn to protect the heads of our workers at offsite building projects. We make big things, often towering over our people, which can turn even the smallest falling object (a very rare occurrence) into a dangerous missile. Proper head protection properly worn at all times mitigates this risk.

4) Proper Coverage

Welding, cutting, and grinding are the heart of the steel fabrication business. They fall into a category called “hot work,” because, well, they’re hot. A welding torch, for example, usually ranges between 6,500° F. and 10,000° F. Arc welding and plasma cutting emit UV rays, which can actually cause skin damage just like a sunburn, so full sleeves, gloves, and aprons are mandatory. A full helmet with a special lens protects the eyes from harmful radiation and ensures sparks and flying particles don’t hit the worker’s face or land in their hair.

3) Footwear

Safety footwear is mandatory for all employees in production areas at Metal Works. Steel shanks protect the bottom of the foot from sharp objects, while steel toes offer increased safety against dropped items. Proper footwear also offers non-slip treads to prevent slip, trip and fall accidents, which are one of the leading causes of workplace injuries.

2) Eye Protection

Vision protection is crucial at Metal Works. Properly worn safety eyewear can prevent serious eye injuries, so we insist safety glasses are worn at all times while working. Additionally, any welding activity absolutely requires a special level of eye protection against UV rays to prevent a painful and dangerous condition called “welder’s flash.” This is accomplished with a special lens in the welding helmet, either very dark glass or a special electronic device called an auto shade, which darkens automatically when an arc is detected to protect the worker’s vision.

1) Common Sense

It may sound cliché, but the most important piece of safety equipment is located between the ears. At Metal Works, we do everything we can to build a culture of safety in our workplace—we provide all required safety equipment, hold regular and meaningful safety meetings, and even host regular health screenings. But at the end of the day, we trust them to put their safety tools and knowledge into action, even when no one else is watching.

Interested in joining a winning team that puts worker safety first? Check out Metal Works’ hiring page.

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