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UK Legislation Overview

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Legislation governs much of the supply and use of Personal Protective Equipment, compliance is essential to ensure correct selection and use in hazardous situations.


1. Health & Safety at Work Act (1974)
2. P.P.E. at Work Regulations (1992)
3. COSHH (Control of Substances Hazardous to Health
4. CAW (Control of Asbestos)
5. CLAW (Control of Lead at Work)
6. Noise at Work Regulations

These are supplemented by a number of other Acts and Provisions which impinge on aspects of Employees Health & Safety at Work.


An essential prerequisite of any Health & Safety Policy is the compilation of Comprehensive Risk Assessments for all Hazardous Areas. The issue of P.P.E. against potential hazards must be regarded as ‘a last resort’ with efforts first focused on eliminating the risk by other methods.


All P.P.E. at work, including clothing for protection against adverse weather, should be certified with the letters CE followed by the Category of Approval.
1. ‘Simple Design’ denoting Minor Risks, Approval by the Manufacture.
2. ‘Intermediate Design’ denoting Serious of Permanent Injury Risks. Approval by a Notified Body.
3. ‘Complex Design’ denoting risks of Mortal Danger, or Danger that may seriously and Irreversibly Damage Health.
Approved by a Notified Body on a regular basis the license number of the Notified Body must be shown.


The EN Number shows the new harmonized European Standard for the Product. It replaces the British Standards. Number previously shown on many items of P.P.E., and indicates that the equipment in CE Categories 2 and 3 has been tested to this Standard by a Notified Independent Body.


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