Safety Bulletins

Helmets with Chin Straps

Helmets are an integral piece of safety equipment required by forestry workers in our country. They prevent untold minor and more serious injuries to wearers every year.

Over the last decade the simple plastic safety helmet has evolved significantly, and several manufacturers are now designing industry specific helmets to better meet workers' needs.

In several recent incidents, where a traditional safety helmet was worn, the worker sustained an impact injury. Conversely, in some incidents where a strapped helmetwas worn, it stayed put and protected the worker.

Task Appropriate Helmets - Recommendations:

As noted above, incidents were the workers wore a modern strapped helmet have highlighted the value of using a more appropriate (advanced) level of head protection.

Taking all reasonably practicable steps suggests that there are several tasks where a modern (technically more advanced), strapped helmet can be put into service.

Some key points and product information/advice follows:

  • Cheap isn't always best - purchase a ready built (combo) product i.e. rather than trying to join two items (the helmet and a strap) together.

  • The helmet pictured above (the Petzl Vertex Vent  A10VYA HV cost: $NZ 130.00

  • A suitable helmet would meet the AS/NZ 1801:1997 (or comparable e.g. EN 397). Such helmets provide shock, impact and penetration protection from above and side on.

NOTE: The Petzl helmet was successfully trialled in PF Olsen forest operations.

PF Olsen Recommendations: AS/NZ 1801:1997 (or comparable) strapped helmets should be worn when working at heights above 3 meters or when preforming high risk activities e.g. breaking-out.

View this article in Safety Bulletin 116