New hard hat standard up for discussion

Journal of Commerce, IAN HARVEY 

The ubiquitous hard hat, a mandatory personal protective equipment (PPE) will see some incremental design changes, said Dave Shanahan Project Manager at the Canadian Standards Association (CSA).

“The next edition of the standard will be published early in 2015 as CSA Z94.1-15,” he said.

It will replace  the 2005 standard and continue the standard which was first set in 1948.

The changes include a defined “protected area” along with updated penetration testing, removal of the UV resistance requirement pending ongoing research to validate the impact of sunlight.

Shanahan said the standard is set by a committee of 40 people drawn from industry and science.

This iteration reflects the advent of lighter and more resilient mixes of polyethylene, which comprise the shell of the hard hat.

“Every manufacturer has their own secret sauce,” he said noting what’s important to the CSA is how flame and heat resistant the material is, how well it stands up to impact and how it is affected by chemicals.

“We also looked at lamination in cases that would have an affect of softening the shell material,” he said referring to the ever more popular practice of having an NHL or NFL team logos, or other designs printed on the shell.

While the current CSA shift – which will be available online for review at in August – is not revolutionary, the humble hard hat has come a long way since it was first invented as a form of protection.

See the full Journal of Commerce Article.