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Subchapter 20. Tunnel Safety Orders
Article 5. Personal Protective Equipment
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§8414. Personal Protective Equipment.

(a) Whenever employees are exposed to hazards in the work place, and where engineering or administrative controls are not effective in eliminating the hazards, personal protective equipment shall be provided and used in accordance with the applicable requirements of Article 3 of the Construction Safety Orders.

(b) Head Protection. Every employee shall be provided with and required to wear approved head protection. Winter liners shall be provided when weather conditions warrant.

(c) Foot Protection. Every employee working underground shall be required to wear approved protective footwear.

(d) Hand Protection. Approved protection for the hands and other exposed skin areas shall be provided and used where work involves exposure to cuts, burns, electric shock, corrosives, irritants or other harmful substances.

(e) Eye and Face Protection. Acceptable eye protection shall be provided and used where eye hazards from flying particles, hazardous substances or injurious light rays are present. Particular attention shall be given to operations involving sandblasting, cleaning with air and water, guniting, welding, shotcreting and grouting in accordance with Title 8, Section 1516 of the Construction Safety Orders.

(f) Body Protection.

(1) Body protection shall be required for employees whose work exposes parts of their body, not otherwise protected as required by other orders in this article, to hazardous or flying substances or objects in accordance with Title 8, Section 1522 of the Construction Safety Orders.

(2) Where the occupational duties of an employee expose him/her to certain irritants, facilities for proper cleansing of the skin shall be required for the prevention of skin disorders.

NOTE: Employees should be cautioned to wash promptly and thoroughly after exposure to injurious substances.

(3) Acceptable rubber boots and rain gear shall be provided and used where wet conditions are encountered.

(g) Ear Protection. Occupational exposure to noise shall be in accordance with CCR, Title 8, Article 105 of the General Industry Safety Orders. When required ear protection shall be provided by the employer and shall be worn by the employee. Employees and other persons shall be informed of the locations where ear protection is required. Whenever the operations reasonably permit, exposures to excessive noise shall be eliminated or at least reduced by engineering or administrative controls.

(1) Employees shall be given the opportunity to select their hearing protectors from a variety of suitable hearing protectors provided by the employer.

(2) The employer shall provide training in the use and care of all hearing protectors provided to employees.

(3) The employer shall ensure proper initial fitting and supervise the correct use of all hearing protectors.

(h) Hearing Protector Attenuation.

(1) The employer shall evaluate hearing protector attenuation for the specific noise environments in which the protector will be used. The employer shall use one of the methods described in Appendix E of the GISO, Methods for Estimating the Adequacy of Hearing Protector Attenuation.

(2) Hearing protectors must attenuate employee exposure at least to an 8-hour time-weighted average of 90 decibels as required by Section 5096(b).

(3) For employees who have experienced a standard threshold shift, hearing protectors must attenuate employee exposures to an 8-hour time-weighted average of 85 decibels or below.

(4) The adequacy of hearing protector attenuation shall be reevaluated whenever employee noise exposures increase to the extent that the hearing protectors provided may no longer provide adequate attenuation. The employer shall provide more effective hearing protectors where necessary.

(i) Respirator Protection. When it is impractical to remove harmful dusts, fumes, mists, vapors, or gases or where emergency protection against occasional and/or relatively brief exposure is needed, the employer shall provide, and the employee exposed to such hazard shall use, respiratory protective equipment as prescribed in Section 1531 of the Construction Safety Orders.

(j) Personal protective equipment shall be maintained in good operating and sanitary condition. Records shall be kept of the issuance of such equipment to each employee.

NOTE: Authority cited: Sections 142.3 and 7997, Labor Code. Reference: Sections 142.3 and 7997, Labor Code.


1. Amendment of section and new Note filed 3-5-96; operative 4-4-96 (Register 96, No. 10).

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