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September 29, 2010

PPE of the Future

A recent report from Textiles Intelligence in the United Kingdom indicates that, in the future, smart textiles and nanotechnology will enhance the benefits of PPE, offering better protection from occupational exposures, hazardous materials and pathogens that trigger infectious diseases.

When U.S. safety professionals were asked their visions for the future of PPE, 42 percent said they would like to see PPE that automatically adjusts to fit different body types, hands, heads, faces, etc. Next was PPE with customizable style and design options, so workers could select PPE based on their own individual tastes and safety requirements. And fully 87 percent of respondents said customizable or individualized style and design options would help increase PPE compliance.

Technological advances in the PPE industry have led to development of products that not only meet stringent performance standards but also offer advances in comfort and style. Rising demand for high-performance PPE products that are both user-friendly and stylish will help drive change in PPE designs, and perhaps ultimately increase the proportion of workers who comply with PPE regulations.

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