Union says construction should make sure their protective equipment is genuine

Tim Lezard

UCATTUCATT is warning construction workers to make sure that their protective equipment is genuine, following fresh concerns that fake safety equipment is being distributed.

Recently there have been a series of warnings about fake personal protective equipment, especially hard hats, which are produced in Asia or the Middle East. In some cases the fake helmets are so weak that they can be split in two by a person using their bare hands.

UCATT general secretary Steve Murphy said: “Purely and simply, fake safety equipment could kill. Construction is already the most dangerous industry in Britain. Workers need to check the authenticity of all safety equipment and if they have any doubts about its validity then they should not wear it.”

In order to tell if a safety helmet is genuine, workers should examine the helmet closely for consistency of colour, clarity and legibility of markings and make sure it is durable. The helmet should come with a user information leaflet, which should not be a photocopy. The leaflet should be correctly spelled and with the manufacturer’s contact details listed.

Steve Murphy said: “Workers have a right not to be placed in danger, employers must take safety seriously and should not object to anyone requesting checks be made on their safety equipment.”

As well as fake PPE equipment which has been known to include safety gloves as well as helmets, there have also been concerns raised about fake scaffolding poles and scaffolding clamps.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License.
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Tim Lezard

Campaigning journalist, editor of @Union_NewsUK, NUJ exec member; lover of cricket, football, cycling, theatre and dodgy punk bands

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