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  3. Regulations for PPE at work extended

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has announced that the Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations (PPER) will be extended from April 6, 2022, to cover limb (b) workers.

Limb (a) workers have an employment contract and are already covered by PPER. Limb (b) workers have casual employment arrangements but may have a service contract, which can be verbal or written down. Limb (b) workers may work irregular hours or choose when they work. Workers who have a business that advertises its services to customers who can directly book those services are not classed as limb (b) workers.

Under the extended regulations, employers will have to provide PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) to both limb (a) and limb (b) workers who are exposed to health and safety risks at work. When assessing risks and providing PPE, employers must treat limb (a) and limb (b) workers equally and make sure that they have instructions and training on the safe use of PPE. Employers are advised to make plans for how the regulation changes will affect their organisation and should create a PPE action plan.

HSE inspectors will check that workers are wearing PPE. If employers are not complying with PPER changes, inspectors will issue verbal or written advice and in, serious cases, employers will be prosecuted.

The HSE advises that not all mandatory wearing of PPE is covered by PPER. For example, road traffic regulations mandate that workers wear crash helmets when riding motorbikes.

The full details about the extended regulations can be read online on the HSE website.

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