How to Choose the Right Uniform for Your New Company

construction safety vestYou’ve started a new company and it’s time to hire employees. Depending on your business, there are many factors that go into choosing the correct type of uniform for your new employees. When deciding on what to get, consider these factors when making your final decision.

Function
This is the primary factor in choosing your employee’s work attire. Nothing matters quite as much as this one. If your company involves construction, it’s unlikely you’ll want to put your employees in a skirt. What does your business seek to accomplish? What are the tasks you will be doing each day? And how does the clothing allow your employees to accomplish this task? For employees that need to do a lot of running around and leaning over, like food service and construction, stain-resistant pants and shirts are a necessity. If you work outside, your employees might need high visibility pants and jackets to be seen at night. Think about how your employees move and what is needed to keep them safe.

The branding
Ask yourself this: what kind of message are you trying to convey with your uniform? If you work in a restaurant you may opt for light, cotton safety shirts with a prominent logo so your employees are identifiable to your customers. If you’re hiring employees to work in an office space where they rarely interact with customers or business partners, allowing more casual attire may be an option. Consider the placement of your brand’s logo on your employees’ work attire. If your employees work outside, displaying a logo on a custom reflective jacket is a great way to catch the eye of your consumer.

Safety is a must
If you’re working in a dangerous environment, the proper safety precautions must be enforced. A new employee is three times more likely to hurt themselves within the first month than older employees.

These types of jobs might include construction workers, traffic enforcers, police officers — these careers all require the use of a bright construction safety vest, often seen in the form of a construction safety vest. Though your new job may not require construction, it’s a good idea to purchase a construction safety vest for each of your employees if you ever work outside or at night.

Durability
To avoid replacing your work attire often, it’s important to make sure you get a comfortable, yet durable fabric. You want it to wash easily, but look good. Depending on the type of business you’re running, polyester may be a better option than cotton if the job gets dirty. Luckily, safety clothing comes in a variety of colors and fabrics to protect your employees.

Choosing the right work attire for your employees is never an easy task. Consider these factors when you choose your employees’ new uniform.

Good Boots 101: Protecting Your Feet the Right Way

safety clothes

There are vast categories of types of safety clothes. It’s not our place to downplay the importance of any particular type of safety workwear, yet there is a particular emphasis to be put upon proper footwear. One of the most important parts of your safety uniform starts with your feet.

We spend a lot of time on our feet on a daily basis and elements of the more rough-and-tumble jobs we’re a part of demand footwear that’s up to the challenge. Usually, we cover the importance of safety clothing for the whole body, but today we’re going to look at the importance of solid footwear. That’s right, your work boots.

Most people take an average of 10,000 steps every day, while construction workers take upwards of 30,000. You’re on your feet a lot, not to mention the other hazards of the job site. When you’re choosing boots, remember these important considerations.

Usage
Different safety clothes for different jobs. It seems self-explanatory, but the number of workers who buy boots for the wrong job is astounding. The boot for a mechanic will be different from the boot for a forest ranger. Consider the elements of the job you’re doing day-to-day, do some research, and look into footwear accordingly. There might be crossover in some places, but all footwear and jobs are not interchangeable.

Fit, Fit, Fit
You’ve found the perfect pair of boots, great. Now you have to consider the fact that you might be taking upwards of 30,000 steps per day, walking around and doing work on your feet for long spans of time. You could have the most perfect boot for the job, but if it fits poorly you’ll be generally uncomfortable and could end up injuring yourself. Test them out before committing.

Quality Before Coupons
Because you’ll be spending so much time in your work footwear, buying quality products is much more preferable than saving a few bucks. You’re not necessarily investing in fashion so much as protection, usability, and durable functionality. Like with all safety clothes, you’re not walking the runway, you’re keeping your body comfortable and out of harm’s way from the ground up. That’s worth a lot more than the savings you’ll get from a sale.

Your feet are your foundation. Really invest and pay attention to how you protect them on the worksite. The last thing that you need is a stubbed toe that could’ve been avoided by better boots. Now, lace up and get to work.

3 Tips for Staying Safe When Working on the Roadside

workwearWorking on the roadside can be an extremely dangerous job. Between operating heavy machinery, an unsafe work environment, and every regular Joe driving by too fast in their massive SUV, it’s a recipe for injury.

Unfortunately, that’s the name of the game. It’s a dangerous job and you have to live with those risks, right? Not exactly. Yes, roadside work is inherently dangerous, but as a worker you can take steps to reduce those hazards. Here are a few tips for staying safe on the job.

Familiarize Yourself With the Jobsite Safety Plan
Your supervisor will have a jobsite safety plan as well as a plan for traffic control through the work zone. Both plans will outline proper procedures regarding where pedestrians are and aren’t allowed to be, where certain barriers will need to be placed, the flow of traffic, lighting, and more. It would benefit you to read through these plans carefully before starting any work so that you are completely familiar with how things should work, and thus keep safety at the forefront of your mind.

Be Seen
Never assume that someone sees you. You could be one of those tall inflatable things with the crazy waving arms that dealerships use, and still, somebody might not see you. So it’s in your best interest to take every precaution you can to make yourself as easily seen as possible. That means your workwear needs to be high visibility. Reflective safety vests, hi vis jackets, high visibility pants, and even hi vis rain gear should all be articles in your workwear closet. Besides wearing high visibility clothing, you should also know the blind spots of the heavy machinery that are in use within the work zone, and never be in an area that you really don’t need to be in — especially if there are known hazards. If you need to walk by a piece of equipment that is in use, be sure that you make eye contact with the operator to know that they see you. Never stand behind heavy machinery, vehicles, or other pieces of equipment.

Don’t Forget About the Night
Your risk of injury skyrockets as soon as the sun sets and the moon rises. The glare from the headlights combined with the overall darkness will create a low-visibility situation for drivers. That means a high-danger situation for you. During night shifts, you should be more attentive than ever, and wear as much high visibility workwear as possible. Follow safety measures to the letter, and ensure that your work zone is well lit.

The dangers of roadside work are numerous and aren’t limited to the hazards of oncoming traffic. The loud machinery can be dangerous to ear health, and permanent hearing loss can occur after exposure to sounds louder than 85 decibels. There might be asbestos in some of the older materials, then there’s the hot tar for paving the roads, falling objects, and much more. It’s imperative to be vigilant and safe in your roadside work zone.

Need to purchase high visibility clothing? Check out our inventory today.

4 Commonly Neglected Pieces of Safety Workwear

safety yellow sweatshirtsIt’s time we had a fireside chat about something we all know we shouldn’t do but do anyway. About $70 is spent on every employee on foot protection every year. We love a good work boot and never go to a job site without them. Why, then, are there other pieces of vital safety workwear that we start using less and less?

It’s good to be comfortable with your job. We exist in an industry that — thankfully — is becoming safer and safer. This is because of little details like safety yellow sweatshirts, hi visibility clothing, and the like. When we get too comfortable and start neglecting to wear these things, that’s when unnecessary risk increases exponentially. Let’s look at the most commonly shelved types of safety clothing.

Eye protection
Safety glasses are getting better, but they’re still a hassle to wear at times. They’re also one of the smallest wearables that protect one of your most important (and delicate) physical assets. When you’re sweating and fogging up your goggles, think twice before tossing them to the wayside. Inconvenienced vision is a much more manageable alternative to eye damage.

Ear protection
Another subtle, yet delicate part of the anatomy that wears down over time is your hearing. Especially working daily around loud machinery, that constant beating your eardrums take without ear protection is more harmful than you might think. Ya heard?

Gloves
It seems like a no-brainer, but if you work with your hands and severely injure your hands, you might not be working for a little while. You protect your feet all day long in boots, so protect your hands all day long in gloves. It’s no manicure but you’ll keep yourself from nagging, obnoxious minor injuries you’d sustain without gloves.

Visibility gear
Arguably the easiest to forget is high visibility workwear. We’re often working in wild weather conditions and it’s easy to opt for t-shirts over safety yellow sweatshirts when the temperature is stifling. Operational hazards increase when you aren’t as easily seen. Be visible regardless of the weather.

There’s a theme of comfort shining through here. It’s good to be comfortable doing a job, but you’re never above the possibility of danger. Especially in these aspects. Accidental injury is easily avoided by protecting yourself from harmful forces (like gravity, noise, errant shrapnel, etc.) that aren’t in your control. Work smart, work hard, stay protected.

Operational Hazards: Paying Attention While Managing Dangerous Tasks

We talk quite a bit about keeping ourselves safe on the job. Paying attention to external dangers is an obvious part of keeping yourself out of harm’s way. Sometimes popping on your safety uniform isn’t as protective as you might think, so we’re here to talk to the folks operating the dangerous equipment and how they can remain vigilant enough to keep the safety of surrounding coworkers in mind.

Safety uniforms and workwear actively keep employees safe, though in staying protected from instances of equipment being operated by other people, the most attentive personal precautions can falter. It’s a two-way street and calls for close attention on both ends. How can someone operating dangerous equipment maintain attention enough to ensure their own safety and the safety of those around them?

Treat it like new

Complacency is a common cause of injury, most often found in the one-third of employees who are injured within their first year and are forced to take recovery leave. We don’t hear much about experienced workers falling victim of similar complacency, but it’s important to note. Perhaps the machine you use daily is old news to you. Treat it like new, exercise the same caution you did on day one and you’ll automatically slow the process down for those within your equipment’s danger radius.

Head on a swivel

As a kid we were told explicitly when about to cross the street to look both ways, then look both ways again. The same applies here. So you looked and didn’t see anyone within the operational danger zone. Look again. People quite literally come out of nowhere and it’s better to holler at someone to move than frantically wondering where they came from while they’re getting patched up in the emergency room.

Slow it down

Jobs hastily done are rarely done their best. Haste also increases the likelihood of avoidable accidents and injuries. This is especially true of operators of dangerous machinery. There’s a lot of mistakes in rushed work that many types of safety clothing can’t protect from and it’s the operators’ responsibility to see to the safety of the people around them. Quality and safety shouldn’t be rushed.

All in all, worksite safety remains a two-way street of attentiveness paid by workers around danger and those operating dangerous equipment. At the end of the day, these tips will keep every party safe all the way to happy hour.

What to wear when working at height?

working at heightWorking at height is one of the most dangerous activities in construction, maintenance and facility management. Not only are workers exposed to the elements, but also to the risks of falling. The use of fall protection safety equipment and personal protective equipment (PPE) saves lives daily.

In this blog we will look at the PPE you should wear for safely working at height. From specific PPE for preventing falls to standard PPE for keeping employees safe. While equipment goes a long way, we always urge caution when working at height.

Collective protection
Collective fall protection always take priority over personal protection measures. Installing equipment such as guardrails, for example, will transform the entire roof into a safe zone were no fall protection PPE is needed. However, there are plenty of situations where guardrails cannot be installed and PPE will be the lifeline of a worker.

PPE for fall protection
The specific PPE that should be worn for working at height is determined via a risk assessment. Equipment ranges from fall restraint (preventing falls altogether) to fall arrest (stopping a fall when one occurs).

A restraint system consist of a full-body harness, a work positioning lanyard and a connector, which the user can connect to an anchor point. The length of a lanyard prevents a user from falling over the edge of the roof, and the safest way to prevent this, is to use a lanyard with a fixed length.

In the case of a fall arrest system the user also wears a full-body harness and has a connector to hook up to an anchor point, the lanyard however has an integrated energy absorber specially designed to minimize the impact of a fall on the human body. The length and strength of the materials are all determined by the situation.

Additional protection
Additionally to specific fall protection PPE, such as a harness and the correct lanyard, those who work at height should wear proper protective clothing, footwear and hard helmets. Some job sites also require the worker to wear protective gloves, hearing protection or safety glasses.

Protective clothing
Protective clothing should be comfortable to wear, compatible with other workwear, not limit movement, and not be too loose, as to prevent snagging. Ideally pockets should be able to be closed off completely to prevent items falling out. For working at height long pants, that leave no skin exposed, are required. Preferably in combination with knee pads.

The clothing should also help protect workers from environmental conditions. In the cases of extreme weather conditions more clothing may be required, such as a jacket with a large hood that can be worn over a helmet. On the other end of the spectrum, workers are just as likely to be exposed to sunlight. To protect workers from heat-related illnesses they should wear head protection and cover up skin. Please pay attention that no clothing hampers the fit of the harness!

Footwear to prevent slips
Proper footwear is very important in minimizing fall risks. Rooftops, or outside walkways, can get slippery for a number of reasons, for example dead leaves or rainfall. Even workers who need to work at height indoors can face slippery surfaces due to saw dust or oil spills. Footwear must have really good grip in order to prevent slips, but it should also be hard to protect feet from falling objects. Next to this, safety shoes should be comfortable and fit correctly to ensure full stability and prevent exhaustion.

Buying PPE
We’ve gone over some of the PPE used for working at height. As every situation differs, so does the equipment. There is no one-size fits all when it comes to working safely. Employees should determine what fall protection measures and PPE are needed for workers at height. They then need to provide their employees with the PPE and the instructions for use. It is the responsibility of the buyer, in this case the employer, to ensure that the PPE conforms to local legislation and OSHA standards.

Guest post by Danine Timmer for XSPlatforms in Chico California.

Breaking A Sunset Sweat? 3 Practical Safety Tips For Nighttime Workouts

high visibility sweatshirt

Nighttime workouts are growing in popularity. They’re amazing for you, your body is in the zone for exercise more than at the crack of dawn, and it’s a wonderful way to feel awesome and refreshed at the end of the day.

Just because it’s dark outside doesn’t mean you should hang up your workout gear and wait for the sun to rise. Of course, with your twilight exercise comes an increase in safety precautions. Toss on your high visibility sweatshirt and reflective fanny pack and hit the trail with these sound safety tips.

Stay seen
There are all sorts of types of safety clothing for you to pick from. In fact, there are so many high visibility clothing options in sports and workout wear, knowing where to start can be a struggle. But, it’s a necessary struggle. We know you’re not likely to be a danger to yourself whilst working out at night, but other people, vehicles, etc. should be able to see you without a problem.

Heightened awareness
Your surroundings are important. Especially when you can’t see them as well. Just because you’ve got your high visibility sweatshirt on doesn’t mean you should stay head down and hope everyone else is aware of you. Earplugs and earbuds can reduce extraneous noise by 15 to 30 decibels, which is useful when drowning out street sounds and/or listening to your carefully crafted workout playlist. At night, however, it’s important to keep your awareness heightened. With reduced light, those high visibility jackets need to team up with increased attention to hearing what’s going on around you. Skip the earbuds when you workout at night.

Practice makes perfect
It’s a workout. You’ve likely done thousands of them. At night, things are little different, though. You already know that injuries happen because of complacency and becoming overly comfortable with a repetitive process. Throw darkness in with complacency and that’s a recipe for disaster. Practice your nighttime routes during the day first and stay wary of how they may change from night to night. Test runs are great preemptive safety protocol for keeping your nighttime workout free of bumps.

Get out there and stay healthy. Evening exercise is wonderful and the dark shouldn’t stop you from getting your blood flowing. Prep for a safe excursion and stay on top of your surroundings. You’ll find yourself breaking a solid sweat and sleeping soundly, and safely, afterward.

How Kids’ Safety Practices Can Keep Adults Safer

reflective safety vestThere’s an interesting statistic that speaks to the importance of encouraging safety at an early age. In 2014, the Bureau of Labor Statistics found that workers ages 65 and above experienced 94.2 injuries per 10,000 employees, which is fewer injuries than any other group.

This rings clear in a work environment, but it also speaks to the precaution and sensible approach to general existence that has allowed this group of people to live uninjured to an older age. Kids are little more prone to be overly sure of themselves and ignorant of dangers that rampantly permeate the world around us. We understand that your children aren’t going to be running forklifts and don’t need reflective safety vests or other safety workwear just yet, but there are some reasons that kids get injured more often than older folks. We’ve got some things to watch out for as your young ones grow into their awareness of personal safety and how being aware of these things is just as applicable to adults.

Start early
It’s safe to say that kids aren’t born with an acute sense of danger or spatial awareness. It’s something that’s learned, observed, and practiced from an early age. It’s a difficult thing to start, especially because young children will not see the inherent need to increase their awareness of the potential dangers of daily activities that seem so trivial. Once it becomes part of living, they won’t even notice that safety takes the forefront of their actions because it’s natural by then.

They’re hard to see
Kids are small, fast, and insatiably curious. Having reflective safety vests on them at all times is unrealistic, but increasing the visibility of their clothing is an easy way to ensure they’re more easily visible. Neon colors, high visibility sweatshirts, and reflective safety clothes are becoming increasingly popular in adolescent styles. Built for active wear and sports, children’s fashion is becoming much brighter. Small, fast, and all over the place, kids help you and themselves out by being easier to see (that is if you don’t hear them first).

Curiously oblivious wanderers
We encourage the curiosity of youth. However, the tendency of curiosity to turn a sharp corner into danger is all too real. Especially in age groups that are just finding their feet and exploratory power. Rational curiosity comes with exploring potential dangers wisely and honestly. The strategy of forbidding activities does more to encourage unsafe exploration than does inquiry.

While you’re thinking about the oldest people in your company sustaining the fewest injuries, remember that practice begins with children and progresses to the youngest people you work with. Beyond strapping on the hardhats and reflective safety vests, enter the mindset of teaching children the fundamentals of safety and awareness of surroundings and you’ll find valuable lessons that can be pulled directly into the job site.

3 Reasons Construction Workers Need High Visibility Clothing

safety clothing companiesHigh visibility clothing is essential in countless industries, and for good reason. Without safety clothing companies providing these important garments, workers can be injured or even killed on the job. In fact, 4,836 workers were killed on the job in 2015 alone. That’s an average of 13 deaths every day. Aside from worker injuries and deaths, let’s take a look at exactly why high visibility clothing is so vital, especially in the construction industry.

Industry Standards
OSHA and the FHA have a specific standard for high visibility apparel: the American National Standard for High Visibility Safety Apparel and Headwear. This standard establishes three types of safety clothing, which are Type O (off-road), Type R (roadway), and Type P (public safety). In addition, OSHA and FHA standards dictate three different performance classes:

  • Class 1 – Offers minimum amount of high visibility material, solely to differentiate workers from off-road environment.
  • Class 2 – Garment allows for better definition of human form, minimum level of protection for roadway workers.
  • Class 3 – Highest level of visibility and definition, garment must be long-sleeved to qualify as this class.

Any company providing high visibility clothing to employees must abide by these standards to keep their workers as safe as possible.

Accident Reduction
When construction employees are working in high traffic areas, visibility is crucial. Whether it’s construction vehicle traffic or pedestrian traffic, any lack of visibility could mean a serious accident. Keeping in line with OSHA and FHA standards, workers must wear the appropriate class of high visibility clothing to ensure maximum visibility and safety.

Weather Protection
Weather conditions can seriously diminish visibility, whether it’s day or night. High visibility clothing is great for construction workers on outdoor work sites because drivers can see them whether there is snow, rain, fog, or other low-visibility weather.

Choosing the right gear for your construction site can literally save lives. People die on work sites every day, and protecting these employees is every construction company’s responsibility. For all of your questions about safety clothing companies, contact Transportation Safety Apparel today.