PPE stands for personal protective equipment and can include such items as safety glasses, ear muffs or plugs, steel cap boots and respirators to name a few. PPE is to protect workers from getting hurt and work health and safety laws stipulate a worker must wear PPE provided by their employer.
PPE is the last line of defence against injury protection and should not be relied on as the primary means until options higher up the hierarchy of controls have been exhausted. PPE maybe used in conjunction with other controls (eg substitution, isolation, engineering) where the risk of injures is high.
Workers who are required to use PPE will be shown how to use it. Training maybe provided for specialised PPE such as safety harnesses however as a minimum, instruction will be given on the correct use, inspection and maintenance of PPE.