4 major must-haves in construction

I know we’ve heard it before, but these must-haves are worth repeating again and again.

Hard hats

Prevention of head injuries is important in every safety program. How does a hard hat provide protection? It can shield your scalp, head, face, neck and shoulders from falling objects, splashes, spills and drips. A rigid shell can resist blows to the head. The suspension system inside the hat acts as a shock absorber. The right hard hat can serve as an insulator against electrical shock. Some hard hats can be fitted with face shields, goggles and hoods.

Safety glasses

Safety glasses come in many different styles and physical makeup. It is important you use the right safety glasses you need for the task you are performing and that you wear glasses that fit properly and are comfortable.

As a reminder – prescription glasses or sunglasses are not safety glasses! Proper safety glasses have frames, lenses and side shields that provide adequate protection and safety from flying objects. Safety glasses help protect your eyes from objects that could bruise, pierce or damage the eyes and are tested to withstand high impacts. Safety frames are tested to ensure they can withstand the impact from a ¼-inch steel ball traveling at 150 feet per second without dislodging the lenses. Safety lenses are also tested to withstand impact from a ¼-inch steel ball shot at 150 feet per second. Frames and lenses in conventional glasses cannot withstand such impact.

Safety boots

In construction, many people question whether or not to wear safety boots. If something heavy were to fall on your feet, or your feet should come into contact with sharp objects, steel-toe boots can help prevent injuries. Safety boots will also protect your ankles should you step in a hole or onto an uneven surface. When it comes to choosing comfort over safety, safety should always win.


While performing a task that has the possibility to produce injuries to any portion of the hand, gloves should be used. In certain circumstances, there are exceptions to this. In tasks where gloves can be caught in a tool or machinery, thus creating a higher chance of injury, gloves should not be used. This should be discussed with the onsite safety professional prior to proceeding. For further information on gloves to protect your hands, refer to 29 CFR part 1910.138.

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Lisa Crawford
Master Safety Training program coordinator