NEW PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT STANDARD
PREDICTED TO PREVENT THOUSANDS OF INJURIES
STANDARD CLARIFIES WHAT ITEMS EMPLOYERs ARE REQUIRED TO PAY FOR
NASHVILLE – Tennessee Occupational Safety and Health Administration is in the process of adopting the new federal OSHA standard on personal protective equipment (PPE). The federal standard was enacted last month; Tennessee is anticipated to adopt the new standard late this summer.
The provisions in OSHA standards that require PPE generally state that the employer is to provide such PPE. However, some of these provisions do not specify that the
employer is to provide such PPE at no cost to the employee. In this rulemaking, OSHA is requiring employers to pay for the PPE provided, with exceptions for specific items. The rule does not require employers to provide PPE where none has been required before. Instead, the rule merely stipulates that the employer must pay for required PPE, except in the limited cases specified in the standard.
“Now, instead of employers wondering what they need to pay for and what they don’t, they can go to the standard,” said TOSHA Administrator John Winkler. “This just clarifies what types of PPE must be paid for by the employer and what is to transpire when it is lost or damaged.”
According to the standard, some exceptions to what the employer is required to pay for are the following: non specialty safety-toe protective footwear and non-specialty prescription eyewear provided that the employer permits such items to be worn off the job-site, everyday clothing (long sleeve shirts, long pants, street shoes, etc.), items used solely for protection from weather (coats, jackets, gloves, hats, sunscreen, etc.) or when an employee intentionally loses or damages the PPE.
According to OSHA, the PPE standard accomplishes three objectives:
- It implements the underlying requirements in the OSHA act that employers pay for workplace safety and health.
- It creates a clear and consistent policy across OSHA’s standards, reducing confusion about what items that employers are required to pay for.
- It is estimated that the new ruling will result in 21,000 fewer occupational injuries per year.
To view the full PPE standard please go to: http://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=STANDARDS&p_id=9.
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