Practices for Personal Protective Equipment

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) defines personal protective equipment (PPE) as equipment worn to minimize exposure to hazards that may cause injuries and illnesses. PPE can include items such as safety glasses and various types of gloves, boots, hearing protection, respirators, hard hats, and more. OSHA also notes that the selection, use and training, care, replacement, disposal, and monitoring are important factors in the effective adoption and use of PPE. In the context of state DOTs, DOT employees face a wide range of unique hazards from their laboratory and office settings to their highway construction and maintenance operations near live traffic. PPE practices and programs at state DOTs would likely need to be adaptable, offering PPE from high-visibility clothing to items for chemical protection. There have also been many recent advances and research in the improvement of PPE. One such advancement has been in the move from traditional hard hats to Class II helmets. At least one state DOT has moved entirely to the Class II helmets for personnel needing head protection. Other DOTs have piloted these helmets and will issue them to specific work groups or by request. Adoption of Class II helmets by state DOTs will likely increase. The objective of this synthesis is to document state DOT practices for the distribution and assignment of PPE, including the adoption and implementation of newly developed PPE. Information to be gathered includes (but is not limited to): (1) Written policies and procedures regarding PPE; (2) Types of PPE used and when they are used; (3) Tracking and management of PPE; (4) Adoption of newly developed PPE and piloting (e.g., Class II helmets, high-visibility clothing, PPE for chemical protection); (5) Provision or requirements for employee purchases of PPE; (6) Colors allowed for PPE; (7) Nightwork PPE; PPE training programs; (8) Employee input and feedback on the use of PPE; and (9) PPE care, replacement, and disposal practices.


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Funding: $55000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 20-05, Topic 56-18

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) Synthesis

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC    20001

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590

    American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)

    444 North Capitol Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001
  • Project Managers:

    Gause, Jo

  • Start Date: 20240528
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01920049
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 20-05, Topic 56-18
  • Files: TRB, RIP
  • Created Date: May 29 2024 12:23PM