Why do you need to decide on the appropriate PPE?
Because there exist a wide variety of PPE categories like medical ppe, rail ppe, deciding on which one to use depends on many variables including but not limited to who requires the PPE, what this person will be exposed to, how much this person will be exposed to, and the estimated period of exposure.
How to select PPE.
Deciding on which ppe is appropriate for use depends on the nature of the task requiring its use (working with electrical appliances, working with particulate matter, working at great heights, working around sparks), the duration of the task, the potential risks, the weather condition, and the wearer. For example, extreme cold and excessive rains can cause serious problems with railway tracks, warm waterproof workwear are part of rail ppe to protect workers from freezing. Also, strong, durable boots are recommended to deal with the mostly slippery and uneven grounds around railway tracks.
Because choosing the correct PPE has the potential to decrease the rates of injury and improve the rate of completion of tasks and productivity much attention should be given to selecting the appropriate PPE. In view of these, when choosing a ppe, select those that fit the user, and select compatible equipment if multiple items must be worn simultaneously. Also, because ppe require that you always wear them for risky jobs, it is worth considering how comfortable they are before choosing since you may have to spend a lot of time in them.
How to use and maintain your PPE
Owning and even wearing a ppe is pointless if you do not wear it properly. For example, goggles and a face mask around the neck instead of over the eyes and on the face, or holding a helmet under the armpit do not serve their purpose. For this reason, the management of companies and industries should not only supply ppe to their employees but should go a step further and educate them on how to use (select, wear, use and maintain) them properly, as well as enforce their use, and regularly evaluate their effectiveness. Employees on the other hand should always use the equipment per instructions.
As far as maintaining ppe is concerned, equipment should always be cleaned before storage, regularly evaluated to maintain their integrity, and terminate the use of the equipment in case any damage is identified on any of the equipment.