Personal Protective Equipment

The term ‘worker’ in this document refers to anyone at the University that may be exposed to hazards that pose a risk to their safety and health. This includes, but not limited to, support staff, faculty, students, management, volunteers, and visitors.  The exception to this use of the term ‘worker’ is when it contradicts the expressed statements or intent of applicable workplace safety and health legislation.  

Please contact Environmental Health and Safety for more information or assistance in evaluating the need and type of personal protective equipment.

·         Telephone: 204-474-6633

·         Email:  EHSO@umanitoba.ca

·         Or view the EHS Quick Contacts document to determine the specific EHS staff to contact - click on the Home page link on the left menu.

 

The University’s governing safety and health procedures state that employees, students, and visitors “properly use and adequately care for personal protective equipment that is required for their activities”.

 

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is any equipment worn by someone to minimize exposure to various workplace hazards.  Common examples of PPE include, but are not limited to, respirators, gloves, aprons, fall protection, hearing protectors, hardhats, ‘steel-toed’ boots, safety glasses, face shields, and goggles.  PPE does not eliminate or reduce the hazard; it’s only used in an attempt to reduce the worker’s exposure to the hazard.  It is the ‘last line of defense’ to protect the worker.  PPE is almost always the least effective form of control due to discomfort, fitting, training, maintenance, supervision (enforcement of policies and procedures), and associated continuing costs. 

 

The employer must determine the protection required based on the hazards and risks associated to the assigned work and must ensure that workers (staff, students, visitors) wear the personal protective equipment.

While there are several specific legislated requirements for the use of ‘certified’ PPE, there may be hazards present that require protection from, but not necessarily protection to the level of certified safety PPE.  For example, a laboratory worker in a chemical lab likely will not need to wear footwear with safety steel toe protection, but will need to wear footwear that will protect against exposure to corrosive chemicals where there is a risk from such materials.

In this case, ‘certified’ means that the PPE manufacturer’s has met the specific Canadian Standards Association (CSA) requirements.  

Summary sheets of commonly referred-to CSA Standards:

·         Protective Eyewear: A User’s Guide  Z94.3.1-02

·         Eye and Face Protectors  Z94.302 

·         Guideline on Selection, Care and Use of Protective Footwear  Z195.1-02 

·         Protective Footwear  Z195-02 

·         Hearing Protection Devices - Performance, Selection, Care and Use  Z94.2-02

·        Industrial Protective Headwear - Performance, Selection Care and Use  Z94.1-05

·        High-Visibility Safety Apparel  Z96-09

 

The Manitoba Workplace Safety and Health Regulation, 217/2006 (including amendments), does have several specific requirements regarding PPE. 

 

Risk Assessment:

Workplace safety and health legislation requires that before any personal protective equipment is mandated by the employer to control a hazard, the employer must:

  • Where there is a risk to the safety and health of a worker, eliminate the hazard through the design of the workplace, the design of the work process, or the use of engineering controls if reasonably practicable.
  • If the hazard cannot be eliminated, any remaining risk must be controlled through the design of the workplace, the design of the work process, or the use of engineering controls.
  • To the extent risk remains after taking the measures stated above, safe work procedures to reduce the remaining risk as much as reasonably practicable.
  • Only after these measures have been completed, will workers be required to wear PPE. In other words, attempt to eliminate the hazard or implement engineering control measures before requiring a worker to wear any PPE.

 

 

A brief summary of legislated personal protective equipment requirements under the Workplace Safety and Health Act and its Regulations (Part 6):

Employer obligations:

·         An employer must ensure that a worker wears and uses any required PPE,

·         Safe work procedures must be implemented for the use of PPE, workers are trained in those procedures, and workers comply with those safe work procedures (these procedures must not be inconsistent with the manufacturer’s procedures, if established),

·         Ensure PPE is clean, accessible to the worker, immediately repaired or replaced, and cleaned or replaced if contaminated with a hazardous substance,

·         The PPE is fit for its purpose – inspecting, testing, or pre-use procedure,

·         The PPE fits the worker correctly and can be used without an adverse effect to the worker’s safety and health (see also ‘respirators’ below),

Worker obligations:

·         A worker must wear or use PPE in accordance to the manufacturer’s instructions,

·         Must take reasonable steps to prevent damage to it,

·         Inform the employer if the PPE becomes defective or fails to provide the required protection,

 

Specific types of Personal Protective Equipment:

High visibility safety apparel

Skin protection

Protective clothing

Protective headwear (not a construction project site):

Protective headwear (a construction project site):

Footwear

Eye and face protectors  

Hand, arm, leg, and body protection  

Respiratory protective equipment   

Protection from drowning

All-terrain vehicles and snowmobiles  

 

 

·         High visibility safety apparel:

o   High visibility safety apparel (‘hi-viz’), is required when a worker is exposed to a risk from a moving vehicle, powered mobile vehicle or due to environmental or other conditions;

o   It must meet the requirements of CAN/CSA-Z96-02, High-Visibility Safety Apparel,

o   CSA Standards Summary Sheet

 

·         Skin Protection:

o   If there is a risk of injury to a worker’s skin from sparks, molten metal, and ionizing or non-ionizing radiation, the PPE must meet the requirements of CAN/CSA-W117.2-01 (R2006), Safety in Welding, Cutting and Allied Processes, or a safeguard that provides equivalent protection.

o   PPE that is appropriate for the risk if there is a risk of injury to a worker’s skin from radiant heat, or a sharp object that may puncture or abrade the skin.

 

·         Protective clothing:

o   If a process may create a risk of contamination of the worker’s skin or clothing by a hazardous substance, the employer must provide the worker with protective clothing appropriate for the risk, and launder or dispose of the protective equipment regularly.

o   If protective clothing is being provided, the employer must provide a place to store the worker’s street clothing that is separate from where the protective clothing is being stored.

 

·         Protective headwear (not a construction project site):

o   An employer must provide a worker with protective headwear that is appropriate for the risk and meets the requirements of CSA Standard Z94.1-05, Industrial Protective Headwear Performance, Selection, Care and Use or ANSI Z89.1-2003, American National Standard for Industrial Head Protection, if there is a risk or injury

§  To the worker’s head, including a possibility of lateral impact to the worker’s head; or

§  To the worker from contact with an exposed energized electrical conductor.

o        An employer required to provide a worker with protective headwear must also provide a worker with

§  A liner for that headwear if it is necessary to protect the worker from cold conditions; and

§  A retention system to secure the headwear if the worker is likely to work in conditions that may cause the headwear to dislodge.

o   An employer may provide a worker with a bump hat or other protective headwear appropriate for the risk if the risk of injury is limited to injury to the worker’s scalp.

 

·         Protective headwear (a construction project site):

o   A worker at a construction site must wear protective headwear that meets the meets the requirements of CSA Standard Z94.1-05, Industrial Protective Headwear Performance, Selection, Care and Use or ANSI Z89.1-2003, American National Standard for Industrial Head Protection.

o   A worker is responsible for providing the protective headwear he or she is required to wear and if necessary, also for providing

§  A liner for that headwear if it is necessary to protect the worker from cold conditions; and

§  A retention system to secure the headwear if the worker is likely to work in conditions that may cause the headwear to dislodge.

 

·         Footwear: 

o   An employer must provide a worker with

§  outer foot guards that provide metatarsal protection, when there is substantial risk of a crushing injury to the worker’s foot; and

§  protective footwear, when the worker’s feet may be endangered by a hot, corrosive or toxic substance.

o   Subject to above, a worker is responsible for providing for himself or herself protective footwear that

§  Is appropriate for the risk associated with the worker’s workplace and work; and

§  Meets the requirements of

·         CSA Standard Z195.1-02, Guideline on Selection, Care, and Use of Protective Footwear, or

·         CAN/CSA Standard Z195-02, Protective Footwear,

If the worker may be at risk of injury from a heavy or falling object or from treading on a sharp object.

·         Eye and face protectors: 

o   An employer must provide a worker an eye or face protector that meets the requirements of CAN/CSAZ94.302, Eye and Face Protectors and CSA Standard Z94.3.102, Protective Eyewear: A User’s Guide, and that is appropriate for the risk, if there is a risk of irritation or injury to the worker’s face or eyes from

§  flying objects or particles;

§  splashing liquids or molten metal;

§  ultraviolet, visible or infrared radiation; or

§  any other material, substance or matter.

o   Prescription lenses or prescription eyewear are not included as eye protectors.

 

·         Hand, arm, leg, and body protection: 

o   An employer must provide a worker with hand, arm, leg or body protective equipment that is appropriate for the risk and to the workplace if there is a risk of injury to the worker’s hands, arms, legs or torso.

o   Without limiting subsection (1), an employer must provide a worker with appropriate gloves or mitts and sleeves if there is a risk of injury to the worker from contact with an exposed energized electrical conductor.

 

·         Respiratory protective equipment: 

o   An employer must ensure that respiratory protective equipment provided to a worker is

§  appropriate for the risk to which the worker is or may be exposed, as determined by the employer;

§  selected, used and maintained in accordance with CAN/CSAZ94.402, Selection, Use, and Care of Respirators;

§  of proper size, and that it makes an effective seal to the facial skin of the worker where a tight fit is essential to its proper functioning;

§  kept in a convenient and sanitary location when not in use, and that it is not exposed to extremes of temperature or to any contaminant that may inactivate it; and

§  not shared by workers, unless it is cleaned before different workers use it. 

o   An employer must ensure that a worker using the respiratory protective equipment

§  is adequately trained by a competent person in the proper fit, testing, maintenance, use and cleaning of the equipment and in its limitations;

§  is able to test, maintain and clean the equipment;

§  is able to use the equipment safely; and

§  inspects and tests the equipment before each use.

 

·         Protection from drowning: 

o   When a worker is required to work at a place, other than a boat, from which the worker could fall and drown, and he or she is not protected by a guardrail, an employer must

§  provide the worker with a life jacket;

§  ensure that the worker complies with Part 14 (Fall Protection);

§  ensure that the following rescue equipment is readily available:

·         an appropriately powered boat equipped with a boathook,

·         a buoyant apparatus attached to a nylon rope, where the rope is not less than 9 mm in diameter and not less than 15 m in length,

·         a notification or signalling device; and

§  ensure that a sufficient number of properly equipped and trained rescue personnel are readily available to undertake a rescue in the event one is required.

o   An employer must ensure that each worker who is transported by or works on a boat is provided with his or her own life jacket or personal flotation device that is kept within the immediate reach of the worker at all times.

o   An employer must provide the following personal protective equipment to a worker if there is a risk to the safety or health of the worker from falling through ice:

§  a full body suit that protects the worker from hypothermia and buoyancy equipment that meets the following standards and has the following minimum buoyancy:

·         CGSB Standard CAN/CGSB 65.7-2007, Lifejackets, Inherently Buoyant Type, and should be “minimum buoyancy of 150 N or 34 lbs,

·         CGSB Standard CAN/CGSB 65 GP 14M, Lifejackets, Inherently Buoyant, Standard Type, and with a minimum buoyancy of 125 N or 28 lbs;

§  a full body flotation suit that both meets the buoyancy requirements under clause (a) and protects the worker from hypothermia.

o   If a worker is required or permitted to work on ice,

§  an employer must ensure that the worker is instructed that he or she must wear the personal protective equipment at all times while on the ice; and

§  the worker must wear the personal protective equipment at all times while on the ice.

o   If a worker works alone on a boat,

§  an employer must ensure that the worker is

·         provided with a life jacket or personal flotation device, and

·         instructed that he or she must wear the jacket or device at all times while working; and

§  the worker must wear the jacket or device at all times while working.

§  “ice” means ice that is over water, where the water is more than one metre deep; or over any other material into which a worker could sink more than one metre.

 

·         All-terrain vehicles and snowmobiles: 

o   An employer must ensure that a worker who is required or permitted to travel in or on the following is provided with protective headwear, including, where required, a liner, cold weather face guard and an eye protector for working in cold conditions:

§  an allterrain vehicle or a snowmobile, as defined in The OffRoad Vehicles Act;

§  a towed conveyance, being a sled, cutter, trailer, toboggan or carrier that may be towed by a snowmobile or an allterrain vehicle.

o   Above does not apply where the allterrain vehicle is equipped with rollover protective structures and enclosed by a cab that is an integral part of the vehicle.

 

University of Manitoba safety programs that state required PPE and/or related information:

·         Biological Safety Program 

·         Radiation Safety Program 

From the University’s Radiation Safety Manual:

6.0 Full/ Maximum Personal Protective Equipment: 

All Personal Protective Equipment should be collected after use, sealed in a bag or pail and given to EHSO-RSO in case it has radioactive contamination.

a) Lab coat, apron or overalls (disposable or washable) required minimum.

Recommended: Tyvek suit.

b) Gloves: re-useable chemically resistant gloves recommended. Use thicker gloves when physical hazard is also present. Disposable gloves are required if radioactive contamination is a possibility and may be worn under or over reusable gloves.

c) Safety glasses, goggles or face shield are required if there is any possibility of projectiles, dust, aerosols or splashes such as when drains or vents are being opened.

d) Respiratory protection required if procedure has any risk of producing dusts, hazardous vapors or aerosols. IF drains or vents are being opened or there is any other risk of dust, vapors or aerosols being generated: Combination Hepa/multi- contaminant respirator required.