There are many cases in which employers know that the employees have to face some level of risk on the job. One way that they try to lower the risk level is by giving the employees personal protection equipment. The PPE that they are issued can directly address the risk factors they face every day.
For example, someone who works in a loud factory may wear headphones or earplugs to protect their hearing. Someone who works as a welder is going to have a specific mask to protect their eyes, which can be damaged simply by the bright light, even if there is no contact with any of the welding materials.
But there may be a situation in which your employer issues you PPE that doesn’t actually work correctly. This could mean that you are still injured, and it may even increase your risks because you think you are safe.
The risk of asbestos
One example of how this could happen is if you are going to be exposed to asbestos. Employers should provide PPE that includes a mask to filter out the asbestos particles. But these masks have to be specially rated and tend to be much more expensive. If your employer gives you a dust mask instead, they may believe that they have done enough to keep you safe. But those asbestos particles are simply going to travel straight through the dust mask and you will be exposed to them the entire time you’re working in that situation.
This is just one example, but you can imagine how PPE issues lead to many worker injuries every year. Those who have been hurt need to know exactly what legal options they have.