wearing a hard hat, OSHA approved hard hats, hard hat color meaning, fall protection class, OSHA head protection

Why wearing a hard hat is so important and what benefits it brings

By: Able Safety Consulting

The importance of wearing a hard hat on construction sites

Occupational Safety and Health Administration requires all employers to provide workers with hard hats and ensure that they wear them. Since this is a mandatory requirement, the information where it comes from and the importance of following this rule is an obligatory part of each fall protection class.  

Whereas there might be individuals who ignore wearing a hard hat and consider it unimportant, OSHA underlines the risks of such an indifference:

  • head injuries from falling objects,
  • nearby overhead hazards, 
  • possible contact with electrical hazards,
  • traumatic brain injuries resulting in temporary or permanent disability.

What knowledge do the SST Classes provide?

Besides the potential hazards, during the obligatory SST class, the participants get informed about:

  • who should wear the hard hats 

OSHA head protection is particularly regulated under Standard 1910.135. Such professionals as electricians, linemen, carpenters, mechanics have an obligation to wear hard hats at all times during the work​​ to minimize the probability of electrical shock when being next to the exposed electrical conductors which could contact the head.

  • hard hat color meaning

It might be something new to know that each color of the hard hats is meant to signify different things. For example, site supervisors, engineers, and managers wear white hats, whereas general workers and earth-moving operators have yellow ones. Carpenters and technical employees like electricians have blue hats, safety inspectors or new employees wear green ones, lifting operatives have orange hats, and Fire Marshals usually wear red ones. Brown hats are given to welders and gray ones to the site visitors.

  • hard hat types

There are two types of OSHA approved hard hats: Type I and Type II. Hard Hats from the first category minimize the potential hazard on the top of the head, for instance, a hammer or nail gun that falls from above. Hard Hats of the second type minimize the hazards that come from different directions, for instance, contact with the sharp corner of a side beam.

  • hard hat safety stickers

Fall prevention training provides information about OSHA’s point of view on painting the helmets or putting stickers on them. According to the Regulations, the employer might apply safety stickers on the hard hats as long as they do not damage the head protection, do not cover the defects, and do not decrease the reliability of the hat.