Ask Annissa: What PPE Should Be Worn When Doing Contents Work?
Personal protective equipment (PPE) is usually minimal when it comes to contents restoration. However, it all depends on what type of job it is. Sewer, water, mold, fire or forensic cleaning all require difference levels of PPE.
Here is a list of the common items that I keep on hand at all times.
• 6 mil nitrate gloves
• Heavy duty chemical resistant
• Booties for shoes
• Standard white Tyvek suits
• Heavy duty chemical resistant Tyvek suits
• Safety glasses
• Full face shields
• Full-face and partial respirators
• Vented paper partial masks for the mouth
• Rubber boots that go to just below the knee
We deal with mostly fire jobs so the most commonly used PPE on almost every job are the nitrate gloves, booties, safety glasses and paper masks. If the fire was really bad and we have a lot of debris, then we may wear full face shields or partial respirators. In a severe situation where you may have blown in insulation involved due to attic damage or roof demolition, we fully suit up in heavy duty Tyvek suits and full-face respirators.
If your employees have full face respirators, it is required by OSHA that they each have their own mask and be medically fitted prior to use. We have PPE kits that are issued to each team member. They sign off that they have received it and initial that they have verified its contents. Our state has laws in place with our Labor and Industry Department that governs how this is handled and what our requirements are as an employer. You should check with your state labor agencies and be aware of what your responsibilities are where you operate your business.
It is a good idea to have a safety manual for your employees to use as a standard on all jobs. This will help keep them safe and help keep you out of trouble with local labor authorities. We give a copy of our manual upon hiring and receive a signed acknowledgment in return for their employee file.