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Only 30 percent of health and safety managers think that essential protective equipment is always worn on construction sites, reveals a specialist survey. Managers on Olympic sites could hold the key as to why – 36 percent reckon that work safety gear is just not macho enough.
The report, commissioned by diversified technology company and personal protective equipment (PPE) manufacturer, 3M, shows the battles that health and safety managers face in the construction industry to get their workers to wear the equipment that, quite simply, could save their lives.
As well as interviewing managers, the report researchers polled building site workers, to find out how manufacturers could improve the products. One builder who works on industrial new builds suggested that manufacturers “get the workforce involved at the development stage of products.” And a female structural and civil engineering worker would like to see “smaller sizes of shoes and safety boots for ladies.”
Vikki Randles, marketing manager for 3M Occupational Health and Environmental Safety, said: “One of the issues the survey has thrown up is the negative general perception of ‘elf and safety’. Many managers feel that the image overall needs be improved, not just the clothing. Forty-eight percent in companies of 250 workers and over cited this as the main item that could be addressed in the war to get 100 percent commitment.”
As one of the leading PPE suppliers, 3M is committed to working with both workers and health and safety managers to help break down some of the barriers and issues when it comes to PPE and will work with the industry to combat the image issues. The company has also developed a suite of training and support tools.