Personal Protective Equipment

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  • OBJECTIVE

    This policy establishes the minimum requirements for the selection and proper use of personal protective equipment.

    AUTHORITY

    By authority delegated from the University President, the Vice-president for Business Affairs is responsible for the safety of all University facilities. Under this authority, policies are developed to provide a safe teaching, research, service, housing and recreational environment.

    Reference

    OSHA 29 CFR 1910.132 Personal Protective Equipment General Requirements and other applicable OSHA General Industry regulations covering specific types and uses of PPE; Governor’s Executive Order 2000-92

    POLICY

    University staff exposed to physical and/or health hazards while performing their job duties are required to wear personal protective equipment (PPE). Whenever possible, an identified hazard must be eliminated through engineering or administrative controls before the use of PPE is authorized.

    A workplace hazard assessment must be performed to determine the appropriate PPE for a given task.  There are various tools available at UF to conduct a workplace hazard assessment:

    • For Labs and Research Spaces: Laboratory Assessment, Training, and Chemical Hygiene (LATCH) in Gator TRACS
    • For Facilities, Shops and Other Work Spaces: Workplace Hazard Assessment Form 

    All PPE issued to University employees must comply with applicable third-party certifying bodies (i.e. ANSI, NIOSH) and shall be provided by the supervisor at no cost to affected staff.

    Additional specialized PPE requirements may apply and may be viewed in other UF safety policies (i.e. Electrical Safety).

    RESPONSIBILITIES

    Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S)

    EH&S is responsible for the development and periodic review of the Personal Protective Equipment policy at the University of Florida.

    EH&S shall provide technical assistance to campus organizations required to participate in this program and provide assistance in conducting job hazard assessment.

    EH&S shall have the authority to stop work in cases where personnel are observed misusing or not using appropriate PPE.

    Supervisors and Departments

    All Divisions and Departments are required to comply with the requirements of this policy.

    Supervisors are expected to conduct job hazard assessments to determine what PPE must be used by their staff. Hazard assessments must be updated annually, at minimum, or as the scope and nature of the work changes. Required PPE shall be provided to employees at no cost.

    Each Division and Department is required to provide all required training, unless otherwise noted, in the use and proper care of personal protective equipment.

    Employees

    Every employee is expected to review the hazard assessment and wear the assigned PPE for its intended purpose.

    The employee is responsible for taking care of assigned PPE including keeping equipment clean and in working order.

    All employees required to wear PPE must complete the required training prior to using the assigned equipment.

    Failure of employees to properly use assigned PPE when required may result in disciplinary action against the employee.

    PROCEDURES

    Hazard Assessments

    The need for PPE and the identification of the appropriate type of PPE is determined through the completion of hazard assessments. Supervisors must review and evaluate work tasks to identify any physical and health hazards that require the use of PPE by their staff.

    Hazard assessments must be completed using one of the following  tools:

    • For labs and research groups: LATCH assessment in Gator TRACS
    • For facilities and shops: Appendix A. Completed hazard assessments must be kept on file and be available for review.

    Updated hazard assessments shall be completed if job processes change or if new types of equipment are placed into service.

    PPE Selection

    Selection of the appropriate PPE is determined by the results of the hazard assessment.

    All PPE used must be certified and be in compliance with applicable regulations.

    PPE without a recognized third-party certification (i.e. NIOSH, ANSI) cannot be used at the University of Florida.

    PPE may also be selected based on the requirements noted in a Safety Data Sheet (SDS) for chemical products used in a job task. The SDS must be reviewed by the supervisor and employee prior to using the specific product.

    Required PPE must be made available to employees at no cost.

    Everyday clothing such as long-sleeved shirts, long pants, street shoes and normal work boots are not considered PPE and are not required to be provided.

    Items used only for protection from the weather are also exempt from the PPE requirements.

    Specific Requirements

     Specific requirements for each area are explained in the supplemental guides listed below:

    Training

    Employees who must wear PPE for their job duties must be provided training in the selection, proper use and care of the PPE they will be using.

    Training must be provided prior to using the PPE. If specific institutional training is available not available on MyTraining, training records must be documented and maintained by the work area supervisor.

    Documentation must include  a brief description of what the training covered, the employee’s name, UF ID number, signature, date of training, supervisor’s name and department.

    Training shall be repeated if the employee is observed misusing their PPE, or if changes in the types of PPE used render the previous training obsolete or as required by policy.

    The PPE training curriculum shall include:

    • When PPE is necessary
    • What PPE is necessary
    • How to properly don, doff, adjust and wear PPE
    • The limitations of the PPE
    • The proper care, maintenance, useful life and disposal of the PPE