Hard hats and helmets protect the wearer from hazards that impact the head. They have a suspension system that moves the impact force though the body to feet, helping to reduce strain to the head, neck, and spine. These hard hats and helmets are ANSI rated and OSHA compliant. Types and classes combine to indicate the impact type (vertical only or vertical and angled) and level of electrical protection (none, low voltage, or high voltage) provided. Hard hats and helmets should be inspected regularly for structural integrity. Hard hats are used by construction workers, road crews, or where required by OSHA safety regulations.
Vented front-brim (Type 1, Class C) hard hats are vented to help dissipate heat and have a front brim to protect the face from sun, reduce glare, and help shed rain. Type 1 hard hats protect wearers from vertical impacts. Vents on Class C hard hats allow a clear path for electrical arcing, so they should not be used in locations where electrical hazards are present. While full-brim hard hats are used outdoors and in harsh sunlight, front-brim hard hats are used indoors, and locations where the sun is less harsh.
Vented Full Brim Hard Hats (Type 1, Class C)
Vented full-brim (Type 1, Class C) hard hats are vented to help dissipate heat and have a brim around the entire hat to shed rain, reduce glare, and protect the face and neck from sun. Type 1 hard hats protect wearers from vertical impacts. Vents on Class C hard hats allow a clear path for electrical arcing, so they should not be used in locations where electrical hazards are present. While front-brim hard hats are generally used indoors and areas where the sun is not harsh, full-brim hard hats provide additional protection outdoors where the sun is harsh.
Side and Top Protecting Full-Brim Hard Hats (Type 2, Class E)
Side- and top-protecting full-brim hard hats (Type 2, Class E) are used where swinging objects such as hooks and chains pose a hazard. They have a full brim around the entire hat to reduce glare and help shade the eyes, face, and neck in bright sunlight. Type 2 hard hats provide protection against vertical and angled impacts up to 60°. They have more padding than Type 1 hard hats, which generally makes them more bulky and heavier. They are rated Class E for high-voltage electrical protection up to 20KV. Type 2 helmets should be worn when indicated by OSHA or where swinging objects (such as hooks or chains) are a concern.
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