Choose The Right Hard Hat

When working in the field, it’s important that workers use the proper personal protective equipment, including hard hats. There are different types and classes of hard hats, and getting the right one is vital to a worker’s safety.

Types

There are two types of hard hats, Type I and Type II. Type I hard hats are designed to reduce impact to the crown of the head in the event that an object falls on your head or if you bang your head as you rise up from underneath an obstruction. Type II hard hats also reduce the impact to the crown of the head, but they also provide protection against lateral impact.

Classes

There are three classes of hard hats (E, G, and C):

  • Class E (electrical, non-conductive)—intended to reduce the danger of contact with higher voltage conductors, with hard hat test samples proof-tested at 20,000 volts (phase to ground).
  • Class G (general, non-conductive)—intended to reduce the danger of contact with low voltage conductors. Test samples are proof-tested at 2,200 volts (phase to ground).
  • Class C (conductive, no electrical rating)—not intended to protect against electrical hazards and, therefore, are not tested for it.

What this means is electrical workers should always wear Class E hard hats as they are constantly working in high-voltage areas. Class G hard hats are better suited for general construction workers because they may come in contact with low voltage hazards. Class C hard hats are best for workers who will come in absolutely no contact with any electrical hazards. 

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