ANSI Z89.1-2003 describes performance and testing requirements for industrial helmets, commonly known as hard hats. Also includes specifications for helmets designed to offer protection from lateral impact, or top-only impact, giving employers and users the flexibility to specify the helmet that best meets the needs of their specific workplace.
Hard Hat Class Standards
According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), a hard hat must be worn when working in areas where there is a potential for injury to the head from falling objects. In addition, a hard hat must also be worn in working areas where there is the risk of exposure to electrical conductors that can potentially contact the head. In these types of environments, specially designed protective helmets are required in order to counteract the dangers of electrical shock hazards.
Hard Hat Life Span
ANSI does not specify the service life of a hard hat, and there is no standard expiration time frame for hard hats. Hard hat life span may vary depending on the conditions of each work site. As a general guideline, most hard hat manufacturers recommend replacing hard hats every five years regardless of outside appearance. If you work under extreme conditions, such as exposure to high temperatures or sunlight, hard hats should be replaced after two years of use.