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    Science of Safety Podcast: Episode 64.

    January 30, 2020



    Science of Safety Podcast.

    Episode 64:
    Head Protection.

    Science of Safety Podcast.

    Episode 64:
    Head Protection.

    Science of Safety Podcast.

    Episode 64:
    Head Protection.

    In this episode Terry Gorman, 3M’s Occupational Hygienist for the Personal Safety Division in Australia and New Zealand joins us to discuss head protection.

    Head protection refers to an item of PPE known as a hard hat used to protect the skull and its fragile contents, the brain. The hard hat is predominantly used by those who work on busy construction sites and other industrial settings where there is a potential for head injuries from falling, flying or swinging objects, nearby overhead hazards, possible contact with electrical hazards and so much more.




    Guest Bio:

    Terry Gorman (pictured left) is a Certified Occupational Hygienist who has been involved in workplace safety for nearly 30 years. He has worked for 3M Australia and New Zealand in the Personal Safety Division for 18 years.

    Terry is a current member of the Australian/New Zealand Standard Committees responsible for respiratory protection (AS/NZS 1715 & 1716) as well as the Eye/Face Protection Standards Committee (AS/NZS 1337 & 1338).

    He currently represents Standards Australia on the International Standards Organisation (ISO) Committee TC94/SC15, a team of international specialists creating a set of global respiratory standards.

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    In this episode, Mark & Terry discuss the following:

    • Where PPE is in the hierarchy of controls?
    • What can workplaces do to reduce the risk or severity of falling items?
    • How does a hard hat protect from falling objects? Do hard hats protect from any other types of hazards?
    • Are there different types of hard hats?
    • What tests do a hard hat need to pass to be a type 1, 2 or 3?
    • When selecting a hard hat what else should a workplace be considering?
    • Can you explain the concern with putting stickers on hard hats? What about other alterations?
    • What about wearing beanies or caps under hard hats?
    • Can you give some care and maintenance tips for hard hats?
    • How often do hard hats need to be replaced?
    • What are some not-to-do things when it comes to head protection?
    • What about bump caps? Where would they be used? Do they meet any standards in Australia or New Zealand?

    In Australia and New Zealand, the AS/NZS 1801:1998 standard stipulates that you must wear a protective helmet when there is a risk of being hit on the head by falling objects, or from collisions with fixed objects in building and construction, quarrying, shipbuilding, forestry, and other occupations with similar hazards. Although hard hats look like a simple piece of moulded plastic, there are regulations in place that specify the construction and materials of the shell and head harness, mechanical strength, finish and the industry classification of the different types available. Not all hard hats are created equally, tune in as we cover the topic of head protection, from selection, through to use and maintenance.


    Additional Resources:

    Contact a 3M Safety Specialist at scienceofsafetyanz@mmm.com for more information.