Climbing Hard Hats
Climbing Hard Hats - Working At Height Safety Helmets
If you spend most of your time up off the ground, you may need to consider an industrial climbing style hard hat. These have a few subtle differences from traditional hard hats as they have to adhere to slightly different standards.
The critical difference between a standard helmet that any construction worker would wear as head protection and a climbing helmet is the requirement for a chin strap that complies with EN 12492 and the ability to withstand side impacts.
Other differences between climbing safety helmets and traditional hard hats include a shorter peak length; although not a compulsory requirement, this feature makes looking upward much easier. The lightweight construction of most climbing helmets also ensures that you are not carrying extra weight whilst ascending structures.
Do you need a hard hat when working at height?
In short, yes, it will not only help reduce the risk of head injury should the worst happen, but it is also a legal requirement (depending on the work at height you are doing).
If you are working at height without a hard hat, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) could shut down the site and stop work from continuing if they deem the appropriate personal protective equipment is not being worn.
Standard Hard Hat vs Climbing Helmet, what's the difference?
Two key factors make the physical differences between a helmet you would wear at ground level and a working-at-height safety helmet.
Helmet Retention & Chin Strap Requirements
- Working At Ground Level Chin Strap - A chin strap for working at ground level must give way when a force between 150 and 250 newtons is applied. This breakaway feature ensures that the user does not become trapped or choke should the helmet snag or become caught during an accident.
- Working At Height Chin Strap - A chin strap for working at height must conform to EN12492, which states that the chin strap release force must be greater than 500 newtons. This added strength is similar to the requirements for ANSI Z89.1. It ensures that the helmet stays securely in place should a bad fall occur with multiple impacts to the head.
- Working at ground level requirements - When working at ground level, most impact sources will be from falling objects coming directly downward, which means the top of the helmet is the most reinforced. No specific tests are required for side impact resistance under EN 397 (which covers standard hard hats)
- Working at height impact requirements - When working at height, there is the potential for an impact to come from almost any direction. For this reason, helmet manufacturers must ensure their helmets can withstand two strikes to the front, rear or sides. These tests use a 5kg weight dropped from 50cm. To pass these tests, there must be no more than 10kN of force subjected to the neck of the user.
What Are The Working At Height Helmet Regulations?
If working in the UK, there are some common standards you should ensure that your helmet conforms to if you are working at height.
- It should be UKCA or CE marked.
- It should meet EN 12492
- Note: Some helmets, such as those that feature a “dual switch” chin strap, may meet both EN397 and EN12492.
- It should not be older than the manufacturer's specified expiry date.
Of course, as ever, there are other things you may need to consider in addition to this, which may include if you are working with high voltage electrical items, in which case there are other safety standards that you need to consider.
Other PPE In Our Extensive Range To Accompany Your Industrial Helmet.
If a ‘working at height safety helmet’ is not what you are looking for, then you can find our full range of head protection in our head protection category.
We have gloves to suit almost every work site environment on the shelf, ready to ship. Any that we do not have in stock are usually available within a couple of days.
Having a steady footing when working up high is essential; our range of work boots will ensure you are stable on your feet.
If you use any power or hand tools, you will most likely require some eye protection, even if only to protect your eyes from the sun.
We stock a full range of RPE to ensure that you do not breathe in any dangerous dust whilst carrying out work.
We stock a full lineup of fall arrest and rope access equipment, all of which will help keep you safe in the event of a fall.
We can supply face shields to protect the face and neck from flying debris, many of which are compatible with your helmet or hard hat of choice.
If you want to wear a hard hat with ear protection, then we can help; we have a wide range of ear defenders that are helmet compatible.
Has Finding The Right Safety Helmet Got You Climbing The Walls?
Our friendly team is here to help you find the fitting helmet to work at height. We work with major brands who manufacture the highest quality working at height hard hats. This ensures we have the expertise in our sales office and the backup of quality brands to ensure you get the right equipment to protect one of your most important assets! Speak to the team today on +44 (0)1905 794875.