PPE responsibilities have been extended

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By Divisional Managing Director for National & Local Accounts, Mark Dowling

I have some positive news regarding PPE. It’s news that I believe will help minimise the number of work-related illnesses that people suffer every year in Great Britain across a range of industries.


What is changing?

From April 6th employers’ and employees’ duties under the PPE at Work Regulations (PPER 2022) regarding Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) will be extended to include limb (b) workers.

The current Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992 (PPER 1992) places a duty on every employer to make sure suitable PPE is provided to employees who may be exposed to a risk to their health or safety while at work.

But this does not include limb (b) workers. Limb (b) workers are those who generally have a more casual employment relationship and work under a contract for service. These new rules will now extend employers’ and employees’ PPE duties to a much wider group of workers.

What does this mean for you?

If you are an employer, you need to carefully consider whether this change of law applies to you and your workforce. You then need to make the necessary preparations to comply. Remember, the HSE define a Limb (b) Worker as someone who can be understood as a 'dependent contractor'.

A 'worker' is registered as self-employed but provides a service as part of someone else's business. They generally must carry out the work personally, rather than being able to send someone in their place.

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What actions should you take?

If a risk assessment indicates that a limb (b) worker requires PPE to carry out their work activities, you as the employer must carry out a PPE suitability assessment and provide the PPE free of charge as you do for other employees.

You will be responsible for the maintenance, storage, and replacement of any PPE you provide. The limb (b) worker will of course be required to use the PPE properly following training and instruction from the employer.

Will this make the workplace better?

As someone who works with businesses to help them keep people safe at work, I think this is great news. I am glad that this change will prevent a lack of PPE for limb (b) workers add to the already high number of workers who suffer from a work-related illness each year.

I understand your business objectives, goals, and challenges you face, especially when it comes to continuous improvement and the environment. If you want to talk PPE or anything else related to safety, you can contact me directly at mark.dowling@towersupplies.com or call 01202 305518.

Mark Dowling6 TOWER21
Mark Dowling
Divisional Managing Director - General Business
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