A Guide to Safety and Protective Apparel

Safety and Protective Apparel: Types And Applications

Protective and Safety apparel can seem like simple protective equipment. But selecting appropriate apparel can be a daunting process.

Many occupational applications including:

  • traffic management
  • construction
  • manufacturing,
  • chemical handling
  • networking
  • virtually all industries need safety gear of some variety

Some industries require employers carry out risk assessment and provide safety equipment. It’s important to understand what workplace hazards are and how we can address them.

Occupational Hazards and Assessment

As an employer, it’s your responsibility to protect your employees from occupational risks. For that, you need to put in place a risk management.

Relying solely on protective apparel to keep safe is only acceptable when you have carried out hazard assessment and control.

Selecting the right protective equipment for the nature of your employee’s specific job can be a challenging task. Consider applicable laws and draft safety policies and procedures.

It is also important to understand limitations of your protective equipment. If we take an example of a pair of protective eyewear, you will find a warning label saying, “not a substitute for good safety practices and engineering controls”. It means that PPE is the last line of defense against occupational hazards, not the primary one.

Types of Protective and Safety Apparel

There are so many different types of safety apparel that you can choose from depending on the environment of your facility or workplace.

We can classify safety apparel into the following two categories:

  1. PPE or protective apparel
  2. Safety Apparel

High Visibility safety apparel is a kind of workwear that improves your visibility at night or in bad weather.

It serves two purposes:

  1. Makes wearer more visible to traffic
  2. Makes them stand out against background environment

ANSI compliant workwear includes:

  • Durable Safety Jackets
  • Rain Pants
  • Thermal Pants
  • Reflective Safety Bomber Jackets

PPE or protective apparel protects the wearer against many workplace hazards. Such as dirt, chemical spills, containing hair and particle generation, etc.

Safety Apparel clothing is the basic need of workers who have to deal with various hazards on daily basis. However, these safety items allow for particle penetration.

PPE apparel handling can increase the likelihood of contamination. People who have to work in strictly controlled environments can’t wear regular PPE apparel as it can contaminate the environment. Use Disposable apparel designed for cleanrooms instead.

Safety Apparel/Gear

Following are some of the major types of safety apparel:

High-visibility safety clothing [safety apparel]:

High Visibility Safety Apparel
High Visibility Safety Outerwear Apparel

Defined as PPE apparel designed to make the wearer more visible. Low visibility is one of the causes of fatal occupational injuries at construction sites.

Wear high-viz shirts, pants, coveralls, jackets, or any other high-visibility safety apparel to ensure workers’ safety in low-light working conditions.

Whether in office or industrial setting, proper lighting makes all work tasks safer because the sense of sight generates about 85 percent of the information.

If your workplace does not offer proper lightning, make sure your staff wears the right high visibility apparel for the job.

Check out some of the popular high-visibility safety apparel on Harmony

Flame-retardant clothing [safety apparel]:

Flame-retardant clothing [safety apparel]
Flame-Retardant Safety Gear Apparel

These safety apparel protect the wearer against heat and fire up to a certain level. You shouldn’t completely rely on fire retardant clothing when working with open flames.

Compare your work environment or the potential temperature extremes with the ability of your safety gear to withstand heat.

In addition to rubber gloves and aprons, PPE clothing is also designed to prevent harmful exposure to industrial chemicals.

Personal Protective Apparel

Disposable Apparel Protects yourself from particles, liquids, and chemicals in your work environment. Different materials to suit your specific application and offer different areas of protection.

CE apparel protects the wearer as well as the critical product or production process from contamination. The flat-folded CE safety wearables assure that particles do not escape into the critical environment. In cleanrooms, all sources of contamination are strictly controlled.

Disposable Food Safety Bouffant Caps
Disposable Food Safety Bouffant Caps

Clean rooms protective equipment is specifically designed to prevent airborne particles from entering the sterile atmosphere.

Industries such as pharmaceutical, medical, food, and space aeronautical maintain clean rooms as a part of their production processes.

Protective apparel plays a critical role in maintaining the sensitivity of a manufacturing environment.

Here is a couple of examples of protective or CE apparel:

Face Masks [protective apparel]:

Anti-Viral Face Masks
Disposable Anti-Viral Face Masks

Diverse protective product used by a large number of industries; notably, food and pharmaceutical. Face masks not only help the wearer inhale clean air but also function as a tool to maintain a healthy environment.

From Antiviral face masks to Isolation masks, there are hundreds of different types of face masks with literally limitless applications.

Disposable Coveralls [protective apparel]:

Premier Pro SMS Blue Coveralls with Hood & Boot
Premier Pro SMS Blue Coveralls with Hood & Boot

They are manufactured for both protective and safety applications. CE coveralls provide a dry and liquid particulate barrier protection, reducing contamination risks to maintain the cleanliness of the cleanroom.

Beard Covers [protective apparel]:

Disposable Beard Covers
Disposable Beard Covers

Disposable protective apparel such as beard covers and hair nets are the top choice of companies associated with food, research, medicine, and laboratories.

Selecting the right protective or safety apparel for your industrial or commercial application requires diligence.

Communicate with your industry partners whose employees deal with the same kinds of hazards. Ensure your employees’ safety.

About Harmony

Harmony Business Supplies is a well-reputed wholesale supplier of PPE and occupational apparel. We provide premium quality occupational garments and equipment at affordable rates.

You can find a broad assortment of disposable and safety apparel. Visit our site for more information!

Janitorial Supplies Improve Workplace Health

Allwik Economy Spill Kits

Commercial Cleaning Improves Workplace Health

Janitorial Supplies are an essential part of work safety.

Read on for tips on protecting yourself and the office using professional cleaning supplies.

 
The workplace environment has a significant impact on employees’ performance, productivity, and well-being. No matter the industry, janitorial supplies provide a clean workplace that will keep your staff healthy and efficient. A clean workplace means something more than having a shining building.
 
There are many signs which can reflect poor sanitation conditions in the workplace. Some of these signs are dusty and dirty floors, liquid spills and leaks. Unnecessary materials lying on the shop floor, broken containers, overflowing containers and dust bins, etc.
 

Housekeeping and cleanliness

 
Cleanliness and housekeeping are practices which ensure work areas, facilities, and access routes stay in good condition. In a work setting, housekeeping is essential to maintaining a hazard-free and safe work environment. The practice applies to industrial workplaces, warehouses, manufacturing plants and conventional offices. Wherever health hazards can pose a threat to workers. Sanitation experts put great emphasis on workplace safety programs and the need for Professional Cleaning Supplies. Following are some of the reasons why a clean workplace is a safe workplace:
 

1. Dry floors prevent Slips and falls

 

Allwik Economy Spill Kits
Allwik Economy Spill Kits
Apart from preventing germs and illness, maintaining dry and clean floors will help you reduce instances of slips and falls in the workplace. Allwik Economy Spill Kit is a recommended product to clean oil, water-based, and chemical spills. GP MAXX Enhanced Heavy Weight Sorbet Pads is another simple and effective solution to deal with industrial liquid spills.
3M Sorbent Pads
3M Sorbent Pads
You can also use 3M Sorbent Pads that clean up spills quickly. You can talk to your Commercial Janitorial Supplier to know what cleaning products are best for your facility. Moreover, recommended floor cleaners should be used to remove scale, rust and oxides from floors. It’s important to use products that do not contain harmful chemicals.
 

2. Disinfectants prevent the spread of germs

 

Micro-Kill+ Disinfectant Wipes
Micro-Kill+ Disinfectant Wipes
Make sure that your workplace adheres to basic standards of hygiene. Prevent the spread of disease-carrying germs which are rampant in shared spaces like office desks and washrooms. Micro-Kill Disinfectant Wipes provide an easy and cost-effective way to prevent the spread of germs. It is effective against difficult-to-kill microorganisms including VRE, MRSA, and tuberculosis within a few minutes. These wipes are also effective against bloodborne pathogens hepatitis B, C and HIV-1.
Purell Professional Surface Disinfectant Spray
Purell Professional Surface Disinfectant Spray

 

Purell Professional Surface Disinfectant Spray is a professional surface sanitizer which deodorizes, cleans, and disinfects a variety of surfaces. Without leaving any harsh chemical residue or fumes. Equip your facility with Professional Janitorial Supplies and educate your staff on how to make a good use of these cleaning solutions.
 

3. Proper air filtration lowers workers’ exposure to dust and vapors

 

3M Full-Face Reusable Respirator
3M Full-Face Reusable Respirator
It is hard to see them, but vapors, dust and other dangerous flying objects can create a hazardous environment for your employees. Creating an effective ventilation system in your facility can reduce airborne transmission of respiratory infections.
Yet, in some industrial environments, workers need personal protective equipment such as 3M Full-Face Reusable Respirator to maintain a healthy and productive work environment. The use of dehumidifiers can also help cut air pollutants and promote clean air.
 

4. Disposal of waste materials keeps workplace clutter-free

 

Large Plastic Dust Pans
Large Plastic Dust Pans
An unhygienic workplace is likely to produce more cases of employee absenteeism which could cost your business more than you might think. Start with the basics and ensure your facility is being cleaned up on daily basis. Basic cleaning equipment such as Large Plastic Dust Pans and Lobby Dust Pan Brooms are essentials which play a key role in day-to-day cleaning activities.
 
Lobby Broom
Lobby Broom
If you allow waste materials and trash to pile up, it will not only produce clutter but also prepare safe havens for pests which is not at all good for your work environment. So, make sure waste materials are disposed of regularly. Considering the low costs of professional cleaning supplies, establishing a clean and safe environment should not be a expensive.
 

5. Personal protective equipment (PPE) ensure employees’ safety

 

Premier Pro SMS Blue Coveralls with Hood & Boot
Premier Pro SMS Blue Coveralls with Hood & Boot
PPE protects your staff against many health and safety risks. From chemical spills to sparks and moving objects, protective equipment plays a key role in ensuring employees’ safety. Premiere Pro SMS Coveralls are a simple example of how a piece of garments can protect the wearer against many hazards. Similarly, Premier Pro Blue SMS Frocks is highly effective PPE ideal for industries such as the cleanroom, pharmaceutical, laboratories, food industry, non-toxic liquid handling, and power plants.

 

Premier Pro Blue SMS Frocks
Premier Pro Blue SMS Frocks
Apart from providing necessary protective equipment to your employees, provide them with instructions, supervision, training and encouragement so they can work safely and responsibly.
 

6. Implementing good hygiene practices can improve your company’s image

 
Workplace environments should be hygienic and safe for workers and for those who are involved in the production or material handling process. Implementing a workplace hygiene policy will ensure that all your staff is following the same standards and using commercial janitorial supplies to avoid all kind of hygiene-related diseases.
 
If you think there is nothing wrong with your clean-looking workplace, think again. Around 3 million nonfatal workplace illness and injuries were reported by private industry employers in 2012. When it comes to the workplace, maintaining personal hygiene and cleanliness needs professional cleaning supplies.
 

About Harmony Business Supplies

 
Harmony is a trusted source of premium quality janitorial supplies. We strive to help businesses maintain a clean and germ-free work environment by providing premium quality cleaning and commercial janitorial supplies at affordable rates. Visit our online store to learn more.

How to Avoid Germs This Flu Season

How to Avoid Germs This Flu Season

Ways to Avoid Germs this Flu Season

Germs are a concern year-round, especially in shared environments like workplaces. Yet, during flu season, it’s particularly important to avoid picking up any germs. According to the CDC, flu viruses can range in severity from mild to severe, and for more than 4,600 people per year, they’re even fatal.

The flu is most dangerous for elderly individuals, pregnant women, children, and people with certain preexisting medical conditions. With that being said, even people in excellent health can become severely ill from particularly strong strains of the virus. Since no one wants to spend days (or in some cases, even weeks) feeling their worst, there are a few tips you can implement to keep flu germs at bay in your family, workplace, and community:

Talk to Your Doc . . .

They’ll likely recommend the flu shot for you and your family members – it’s the single best way to prevent contracting the illness. Only a select portion of the population – including those who have had severe allergic reactions to the vaccine – should avoid flu shots. However, it’s always a good idea to get a professional’s opinion. Also, keep in mind that flu vaccinations wear off over time. The vaccine is updated each year to reflect current strains, so be sure to follow the vaccination schedule recommended by your physician.

. . . Don’t Consider Yourself “Immune”

If you’ve received a flu vaccination, it doesn’t mean you’re completely immune to contracting the virus. In fact, the CDC reports the risk of contracting the flu is reduced by 40-60% in patients who receive the vaccine. The overwhelming majority of medical experts still consider it worth getting, but know that it protects against certain strains than others. This means you’ll still need to take precautions to avoid falling ill, so keep reading even if you’ve received or plan to receive a flu shot.

Encourage Employees to Stay Home

The best way to keep flu germs out of the workplace is to prevent infected employees from bringing them in. If you manage a team or oversee a business, encourage your personnel to stay home when they’re feeling under the weather. Most strains are highly contagious, and can even be contracted when you breathe in a flu aerosol particle from ten feet away!

Wash Hands Regularly

There are certain environments – such as your home and personal work space – which you can control and keep clean. In public environments, however, you’re bound to come into contact with flu viruses at one point or another. To limit your exposure, wash your hands often, and always before eating or touching your face. When you’ve come into contact with frequently-used public objects, like cafeteria trays, ATMs, and door handles, wash your hands or use hand sanitizer.

Limit the Spread of Infection

Fight viruses with the Curad Anti-Viral Face Mask

Most doctor’s offices now provide face masks in the patient waiting area, which should be donned by potentially infected visitors. If you own or manage a healthcare facility, keep an ample supply of anti-viral face masks on hand for the flu season. Nurses and doctors may also wish to put on face masks before treating potentially infected patients to reduce their risks of contracting the illness. Also, keep in mind the virus can be spread up to seven days before a person exhibits symptoms. Thus, it’s a good idea to avoid sharing straws, makeup products, and similar objects with others.

Keep Your Spaces Clean

Wipe away germs with CleanTex Phone Wipes

According to a Clorox survey, 41% of workers say they rarely – if ever – disinfect their desks. Your cubicle and similar personal spaces can harbor countless germs, so taking extra precautions to keep them clean during flu season is essential to your wellness. From your cubicle to your household, wipe down surface areas often to keep germs at bay. Keep office environments well-stocked with cleaning supplies which can be used safely on electronics like touch-screen computers and keyboards. Use CleanTex Phone Wipes for desk equipment and phones and use CleanTex Clean and Safe wipes or Purell Sanitizing Hand Wipes for your hands.

Cover Your Cough

If you do get the flu or feel like it could be coming on, be sure to cover your mouth when sneezing or coughing. Afterwards, clean your hands to prevent passing your germs onto any surface areas. The flu virus isn’t just spread by airborne respiratory droplets; it can also be passed by skin-to-skin contact and by touching a contaminated surface. Leave a germ-free surface by cleaning with disinfectant wipes.

Practice Healthy Habits

Eating a nutrient-rich diet is a great way to boost your body’s immunity, but many individuals still fall short in certain vitamins and minerals. Talk to your doctor about taking a multivitamin to stay as healthy as possible, and be sure to get plenty of sleep. If you do contract the flu, stay hydrated and seek medical attention if any symptoms become extreme.

Keep your office environment clean this flu season by stocking up on disinfecting wipes, sanitizers, anti-viral face masks and more through Harmony Business Supplies. We have everything you need to stop germs in their tracks. Visit our online storefront for a full list of products, or get in touch with a product specialist for assistance.

 

7 Ways to Reduce Contamination in Cleanrooms

Reduce Contamination in Cleanrooms

A cleanroom bears its name for a reason: its very purpose is to stay sanitary and free of contaminants to maintain a stable work environment. Because employees handle sensitive equipment and components in these critical areas, keeping contaminants at bay is essential to everyday workflow, and ultimately, maintaining profitability.

It may come as no surprise that your employees are the most common source of contamination in your cleanrooms. What you may find surprising, however, are the simple steps you can take to minimize contamination risks. Let’s take a look at some of the most effective tips, below.

1.       Practice Good Hygiene

Practice Good Hygiene
Practice Good Hygiene

Humans naturally produce particles. Our bodies shed contaminants, producing detritus like skin flakes and particles from hair products, cosmetics, and lotions. Thus, while good hygiene can limit the level of contaminants spread in the cleanroom, it’s also important to consider ways in which certain steps of getting ready might be skipped or altered for the purpose of limiting contaminants. Even perfume and cologne, for instance, can produce contaminants. Since 75-80% of particles found in cleanroom inspections are produced by personnel, it’s a good idea to establish a set of hygiene recommendations for your employees to follow.

 

2.       Be Especially Mindful of Hands

TechniGlove Nitrile Cleanroom Glove
TechniGlove Nitrile Cleanroom Glove

A good portion of cleanliness violations result from bare hands touching surfaces, then transferring these particles onto garments before they enter the cleanroom. To make sure your employees aren’t contaminating anything that will be worn inside your critical environments, consider installing no-touch sensors in the areas where your employees don their cleanroom gear. This will allow them to still wash their hands without picking up any excess particles in the process. Cleanroom Gloves are used in areas that have specific requirements for low contamination risk.

Cleanroom Gloves are disposable gloves designed and clean-processed for contamination control and sterility required work environments including cleanrooms, laboratory and ESD work areas. Minimize sub-micron particle contamination by using gloves designed and manufactured for Cleanrooms.

3.       Don Gear Properly

Don from Top to Bottom
Don from Top to Bottom

The way your employees put their disposable apparel on is just as important as the garments themselves. Because particles are also impacted by the pull of gravity, donning procedures should start at the top. Employees can then work their way down. While each company’s donning procedures may be unique to its specific needs, it’s a good idea to adopt a head-to-toe procedure to prevent contaminants from falling and settling on clean shoe covers.

 

4.       Limit Speaking

Limit Speaking
Limit Speaking

A quiet cleanroom doesn’t just boost productivity; it also has the power to reduce contaminants. Consider the fact that loud speaking of just 100 words (less than a minute of normal conversation!) can produce up to 250 particles of saliva. Of course, there are also some contaminants which may not be avoided, such as coughs and sneezes, which produce roughly 5,000 and 1,000,000 saliva particles, respectively. What’s a simple way to limit contamination from saliva particles in your cleanroom? Wear a face mask designed for Cleanrooms.

5.       Designate “Cleanroom Only” Supplies

Cleanroom Pens
Cleanroom Pens

Taking a pen from outside the cleanroom into the critical work environment might seem harmless, but employees who do so will also unintentionally bring a plethora of contaminants inside with it. Not only should you have cleanroom pens, cleanroom notebooks, and any other tools or instruments designated specifically for cleanroom use only, but you should also make sure they’re compliant with your standards. In other words, the supplies you’re using should also have been produced in a cleanroom environment.

Cleanroom paper packaged in class 10 cleanrooms, for instance, is considered safe for use in class 10 cleanrooms or higher. Cleanroom paper products are impregnated and coated with a polymer. This keeps the paper from generating tiny particulates when written on. Keep your area clean of paper contaminants by using documentation designed just for Cleanrooms.

6.       Take Care When Entering & Exiting

Take Care When Entering & Exiting Cleanrooms
Take Care When Entering & Exiting Cleanrooms

After employees enter and exit cleanrooms, encourage them to take an extra moment to ensure doors are tightly shut. It’s a good practice to make sure the door leading to the changing room is also closed before the cleanroom door is opened to prevent additional particles from making their way into the buffer area. In fact, you can further eliminate the spread of contaminants by separating your gowning room into three distinct areas. One for the non-sterile space directly outside of the room, where employees can keep personal items and clean shoes. The second space is the sterile “dirty” area, where employees prepare for gowning. Finally, the last space should be designated for gowning and taking final preparations before entering.

7.       Move Slowly

Move Slowly in Cleanrooms
Move Slowly in Cleanrooms

The more rapidly movement occurs inside the cleanroom, the more particles will be given off. To combat excess contamination, employees should move slowly and deliberately as they approach work stations. They should also be encouraged to enter and exit cleanrooms slowly.

 

By incorporating these tips into your cleanroom protocol, you might be able to significantly reduce the number of contaminants inside. You can find cleanroom documentation, cleanroom disposable apparel, and more supplies suitable for cleanroom use online through Harmony Business Supplies. If there’s a specific item you need help with, a product specialist will be happy to assist you.

Harmony Business Supplies