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Personal Protective Equipment

(264 Article)

Choose from a wide range of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) products designed to keep you and your employees safe. Products include safety glasses, breathing protection, protective gloves and much more.

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Personal Protective Equipment from DENIOS

What is personal protective equipment?

Personal protective equipment, PPE for short, is any equipment intended to be used or worn by workers to protect themselves against a hazard to their safety and health. It also includes any additional equipment used with the same purpose and associated with the Personal Protective Equipment. The following types of PPE, which you will find in the DENIOS range, are distinguished:

Who is responsible for the correct personal protective equipment?

The Occupational Health and Safety Act imposes a legal obligation on the employer to provide personal protective equipment (PPE). It obliges the employer to take the necessary occupational health and safety measures and to eliminate or minimise hazards to the safety and health of employees. By the way: PPE may only be used after other protective measures. This is because according to § 4 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, hazards must always first be eliminated or mitigated at the source. First and foremost, technical and/or organisational protective measures can be used for this purpose. Only when these protective measures are not possible or residual hazards still exist may PPE be used as an individual protective measure. The so-called "T-O-P" sequence is decisive here:

  • Technical protective measures - e.g. exhaust ventilation
  • Organisational protective measures - e.g. instruction
  • Personal protective measures - e.g. PPE

What criteria apply to the selection of PPE?

If the risk assessment shows that PPE must be used, the requirements for the PPE must be defined. Of course, this is the only way to ensure that the personal protective equipment used later on offers the appropriate protection. Of course, the use of PPE must not lead to additional danger: Therefore, for example, wearing protective gloves on drilling machines or lathes is not permitted because of the risk of being pulled in. The following people should be involved in the selection of the right protective equipment, as they can contribute their expertise:

  • Supervisor Occupational safety specialist
  • Company doctor
  • Works or staff council
  • Safety representative
  • Affected employees (in the context of wearer trials)

What are the categories of personal protective equipment?

The Personal Protective Equipment Directive provides for product classification into three categories.

PPE category I (minor risks):

This category includes personal protective equipment for which it is assumed that the user himself can assess the effectiveness against minor risks and whose effect, if gradual, can be perceived by the user in good time and without danger (e.g. gloves).

PPE category II (medium risks):

This category includes all personal protective equipment that cannot be assigned to either category I or category III (e.g. safety helmets, protective footwear, hearing protectors).

PPE category III (high risks):

Category III includes complex personal protective equipment intended to protect against lethal hazards or serious and irreversible damage to health and where it must be assumed that the user cannot recognise the immediate effect of the hazard in time (e.g. respiratory protective equipment, personal protective equipment for protection against falls from a height).

Further requirements for personal protective equipment

Personal protective equipment must also meet the ergonomic requirements and health needs of workers: It must be adaptable to the wearer. In principle, PPE is intended for use by only one person. If circumstances nevertheless require use by different employees (e.g. safety harnesses), the employer must ensure that health hazards or even hygiene concerns do not arise.

What is not included in personal protective equipment?

Not all protective equipment or work clothing is to be included in PPE. This includes:Nicht jede Schutzausrüstung bzw. Arbeitskleidung ist der PSA hinzuzurechnen. Dazu gehören:

  • Work clothing and uniforms that are not specifically for the safety and health protection of workers.
  • equipment for emergency and rescue services
  • personal protective equipment for the Federal Armed Forces, civil defence and disaster control, the federal and state police forces and other institutions serving public safety or public order
  • personal protective equipment for road traffic, insofar as it is subject to traffic regulations sports equipment
  • sports equipment
  • self-defence and deterrent equipment
  • portable devices for detecting and signalling dangers and hazardous substances
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