This topic covers OSHA’s regulations for head protection, which are a subset of its personal protective equipment (PPE) requirements. OSHA’s head protection regulations are designed to protect against the three primary causes of head injuries: falling or flying objects that strike or penetrate the head; bumping the head against a fixed object; and electrical shock or burns.
OSHA requires that employee wear protective helmets when working in areas where there is a risk of head injury from falling objects and when working near exposed electrical conductors that may contact the head. OSHA also suggests, but does not require, that employees wear protective helmets when there is a risk of bumping the head, such as when working near exposed pipes. Effective head protection should absorb shock, be resistant to penetration, resist water, burn slowly, and fit properly.
For related resources and training materials, refer to the following topics: