The use of personal protective equipment is imperative when conducting any lifting operations. The loads that you will be working with will be heavy, and you must take all necessary steps to ensure that you keep yourselves and those around you safe. However, fake personal protective equipment is on the rise, finding itself being increasingly circulated around the lifting market. We’ve explained more on this, and what to look out for, below.
Why do you need personal protective equipment and what should you have?
It is important to have personal protective equipment when you are working with heavy loads or at heights. Minor falls or bumps can end up causing a lot of damage, so it is much better to be safe than sorry.
The above shows some of the personal protective gear that you’ll need
When working with cranes, you should always be wearing a safety helmet, regardless of how light the load is that you are lifting. Helmets are small and lightweight, so are of no inconvenience at all! On this same note, we recommend wearing eye protection too.
The wearing of fluorescent safety vests are also part and parcel of working with cranes, and are just as easy to wear as helmets. Finally, it is recommended to wear gloves that will provide you with a good grip.
The rise of fake personal protective equipment
Unfortunately, there has been a rise in the sale of fake personal protective equipment, with the most common item of these being fake safety helmets. There are many reasons for this, not least being the ease of accessibility now with the internet.
Just as we see fake watches, DVDs and clothes rife online, the sale of other equipment and accessories, such as personal protective equipment, has fallen to cheap labour and reproduction too. Some companies unwittingly order fake personal protective equipment, unaware that they are purchasing knock-off goods, while others knowingly order this budget equipment in order to save a few pounds.
If you’re looking to save money when ordering a fake watch or fake clothes, you can be forgiven, although you’d have to expect these accessories not to look as nice. However, you’d also have to expect them not to work as well, and that’s when it’s a real problem for personal protective equipment. To be blunt, fake personal protective equipment can kill.
To help you avoid ordering this fake equipment, below we have listed what you should look out for when ordering your personal protective equipment.
How to spot fake personal protective equipment
It’s important to note that some fake personal protective equipment is being sold with fake certifications supplied, so this is no guarantee of an item’s legitimacy. Alongside this, some fakes are designed well, and it can be difficult for an untrained eye to detect the difference.
It’s important to thoroughly check all safety gear before any operation
But there are some steps that you can take:
- Only order your personal protective equipment from reputable suppliers who are UK-based if possible. There have been schemes established, such as the British Safety Industry Federation Registered Safety Supplier scheme for you to order from.
- Your equipment should be certified to British or European standards
- If looking at helmets, your item should have one consistent colour throughout. It should also have legible markings and be durable – some fake helmets have been reported to have been easily snapped using bare hands.
- Equipment should be supplied with original user information that is not a photocopy, everything should be spelt properly and have the manufacturer’s correct details listed
What does the law say?
Employers are bound by the law when it comes to providing personal protective equipment that is safe for their employees. You can find this under the Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992 act. If, as an employee, you have any concerns with your personal protective equipment, it is important to raise this with your employer. Further to this, employees can contact UCATT if working in the construction sector, where the use of personal protective equipment is most common.
Do you have concerns with your personal protective equipment?
If you are unsure whether your personal protective equipment is safe or not, we would be happy to help and provide our recommendations. You can reach us here.