Selecting the correct protective equipment

Selecting the correct protective equipment

Hardhats are often taken for granted – but it’s important to choose the right one. Loren Pearson, senior product manager at MSA, stresses the importance of making the correct choice – in what could ultimately be a life-and-death decision – when selecting head protection equipment.


Pearson notes that there are various criteria that determine the choice of a hardhat, and all of these have to be taken into account to ensure that the best possible product is selected for a specific application.

Performance: Ensure that you select a certified product that has been tested to minimum safety specifications and has approvals from recognised bodies such as the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR). A high quality, strong and durable product made by a reputable safety equipment manufacturer will ensure good protection with minimal replacements.

Comfort: Uncomfortable hardhats are often not worn and, without proper fit, do not offer adequate head protection.

Extra features: It is important from the outset to determine whether options such as a chinstrap, reflective tape (for visibility) and face, hearing or neck protection is required, and how these will impact on the safety and fit of the hardhat. Only use accessories that have been developed to be used with a particular brand of hardhat.

Style: A good looking hardhat will, in all likelihood, have a better chance of being worn.

Price: Hardhats are considered basic personal protective equipment (PPE) despite the fact that they are required to protect the most important part of the body. Consider price carefully, as extra features and outstanding safety performance of approved products ultimately add to the final price.

MSA offers stylish and patented V-Gard hardhats that provide high comfort and performance levels for protection against various hazards in industrial environments.

Due to the international success of the MSA range of head protection systems, the company is a proud sponsor of the MSA Golden Helmet Award, which acknowledges companies that protect their staff by selecting and purchasing high-quality head protection products that have directly saved a worker’s life.

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