PPE – Hard Hats & Bump Caps

hard hat

What is the Law around Hard Hats?

OSHA 29 CFR 1910.135(a)(1) requires the use of ANSI compliant head protection when there is a “potential for injury to the head from falling objects.”

What about electrical shock?

OSHA 29 CFR 1910.135(a)(2) requires the use head protection as follows: “Protective helmets designed to reduce electrical shock hazard shall be worn by each such affected employee when near exposed electrical conductors which could contact the head.”

What is the current ANSI standard?

The current ANSI standard is ANSI Z89.1-2003. (American National Standards Institute provides all the specifications for PPE that is produced to provide for consistent protection)

  • Type I – Protection from blows to top of head
  • Type II – Protection from blows to top/sides of head (required in Canada)
  • Class E (Electrical) are tested to withstand 20,000 volts (was Class B)
  • Class G (General) are tested to withstand 2,200 volts (was Class A)
  • Class C (Conductive) provide no electrical protection (was Class C)

When should a hard hat be replaced?

Most manufacturers allow up to 5 years. Check with the manufacturer.BumpCap

What are some signs that your hard hat should be replaced?

  • Cracks, nicks, dents or gouges to shell
  • Stiffness or brittleness
  • Fading, dull color or a chalky appearance
  • If exposed to high levels of sunlight, replace more frequently

What is the difference between a hard hat and a bump cap?

  • Hard Hats are OSHA-required, ANSI-compliant head protection
  • Bump Caps are not regulated and not approved in areas where objects may fall
  • Bump Caps do protect against lacerations

Printable Version: SM – Hardhats and Bump Caps

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Download Standards from ANSI

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