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OSHA Corrects Verbiage On Head Protection.

In November 2023, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) released a Safety and Health Information Bulletin (SHIB) on head protection that contained various inaccuracies and biases. Subsequently, the International Safety Equipment Association (ISEA) collaborated with OSHA to ensure that the messaging and language used in the SHIB were both accurate and fair. As a result of these efforts, an updated SHIB was published on April 12, 2024, which presents a more precise and comprehensive understanding of the complex and dynamic field of head protection. Such initiatives are crucial for ensuring that the most current and dependable information is disseminated to the public, especially in contexts where safety and health concerns are paramount.

Among these key revisions, OSHA addressed the verbiage regarding construction and style of hard hats and safety helmets. The new corrected verbiage, dated March 6, states:

“Proper head protection is crucial in work environments with falling objects, struck-by, overhead electrical hazards, and risks from slips, trips, and falls. Both scientific understanding of head injuries and head protection technology continues to advance. Modern head protection, whether it’s a safety helmet or a hard hat, varies in styles and levels of protection, allowing employers and workers to choose head protection appropriate for the job. OSHA’s head protection standards state that there can be compliance through ANSI Z89.1-2009, 2003, and 1997: published by the International Safety Equipment Association (ISEA).”

CLICK HERE to read the SHIB “Head Protection: Safety Helmets in the Workplace”

ISEA has published a new webpage to help reduce confusion and best inform the marketplace about the various options of head protection available today.

Know the Facts: Choosing the Right Head Protection encourages users to:

  • Unravel the truth behind many myths and misconceptions
  • Learn about head protection safety standards
  • Understand various levels of protection
  • Access the ANSI/ISEA Z89.1-2014 (R2019) standard
  • Find other helpful resources

Check Out ISEA's New Page By Clicking Here!

Within Z89.1, manufacturers are not required to third party test their head protection. There is a difference between “third party testing” and “third party certification.” Just because a helmet is third party tested does not mean it is certified. Want to know if your head protection is certified? Go to the Safety Equipment Institute website and check your product by CLICKING HERE.

Have questions about head protection standards?
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