One of the most identifiable pieces of safety equipment is the hard hat. They are crucial for keeping workers safe on job sites and have had a big impact since their introduction in the late nineteenth century. Since OSHA made wearing hard hats mandatory in the ‘70s, worker deaths decreased 65% by 2016.
There is a lot of thought that goes into choosing the right head protection. One main thing to consider is what accessories may be needed or helpful in a job function. On their own, hard hats offer good protection. That protection, as well as function, can be greatly increased by the addition of accessories.
Hard Hat Accessories
Eyewear – While glasses can easily be worn under cap style and full brim hard hats, eyewear specifically created to be worn with head protection offers many benefits. Both our Ridgeline and Ridgeline XR7 hard hats have anti-fog eyewear accessories. By clipping directly into the hard hat, comfort is increased and the risk of eyewear falling off or being lost is decreased.
Hearing Protection – Protection from noise can be trickier to attain when wearing a hard hat. While earplugs can easily be worn, earmuffs are often more difficult if not impossible to accommodate. Full brim and cap-mounted earmuffs solve that problem. With an NRR of 22 and 23 dB, these soft foam earmuffs offer noise protection that is easily accessible while in the field.
Cooling – Needing to beat the heat in labor-intensive jobs like construction can be crucial for workers. There are multiple hard hat accessories that can be worn to help workers stay cool in hot and sunny conditions. Popular cooling accessories include:
Visibility – While hard hats come in hi-vis colors like lime and orange, many workers and safety managers like to have other elements to further increase visibility. This can be achieved with reflective hat stickers. These self-adhesive vinyl stickers add contrast to head protection and can weather the elements. Labels are acceptable if they do not affect a hard hat’s protective rating or make it difficult to find damage.
Facial Accessories – Hard hats protect the top of the head, but sometimes additional areas need protection. Pyramex recently introduced the RidgeGuard accessory which protects the mouth and jaw from injury.
In the wake of COVID-19, face protection is even more important. With the help of an adapter, face shields can be worn with hard hats in order to protect workers from viruses as well as dust and debris. Face shields aren’t strictly clear and polycarbonate. Other options include wire mesh – often used in forestry – and even IR shields to be used when welding.
When it comes to safety, work smarter, not harder. Adding accessories to hard hats increase their functionality and the amount of protection they offer. Wearing hard hat accessories is often much more comfortable than the alternative meaning safety directives are more likely to be followed.
Want to know more about what accessories Pyramex offers? Check out our full line or contact us today!