How many types of safety helmets are there?

Q: I’m a construction worker and I need to buy some PPE for my work, I’d like to know how many types of safety helmets are there.

– Alex Pieter

A: Safety helmets, also known as hard hats, come in several types, each designed to protect against specific hazards. The main types of safety helmets are:

  1. Type I Helmets: These helmets are designed to reduce the force of impact resulting from a blow only to the top of the head.
  2. Type II Helmets: Designed to reduce the force of lateral impact resulting from a blow that may be received off-center, from the side, or to the top of the head.

In addition to these basic types, safety helmets are also classified into different classes based on their electrical performance:

  1. Class G (General) Helmets: This is a general-purpose helmet that provides some protection against electrical hazards. It’s tested to withstand 2,200 volts.
  2. Class E (Electrical) Helmets: These helmets are designed to reduce exposure to high voltage conductors and offer protection up to 20,000 volts.
  3. Class C (Conductive) Helmets: These are conductive hard hats and do not provide protection against contact with electrical conductors.

Moreover, safety helmets come in various designs to cater to specific industry needs. For instance:

  • Full Brim Helmets: These have a brim around the entire helmet to provide shade and protect against rain, falling debris, and other hazards.
  • Cap Style Helmets: These look like baseball caps and are popular in construction, mining, and other industries. They typically offer protection from impact and penetration hazards.
  • Bump Caps: These are lighter-duty hats meant for protection against minor bumps and scrapes in areas where there is no risk of falling objects or high-impact collisions. They do not meet the standards that hard hats do and are not suitable for construction sites or areas with serious impact risks.
  • Ventilated Helmets: These helmets have ventilation holes to increase air circulation and reduce heat, making them more comfortable to wear in hot environments.
  • Rescue Helmets: Used by emergency responders, these helmets often have additional features like integral eye shields, ear protection, and mounts for headlamps.

Remember, choosing the right type of safety helmet depends on the work environment, potential hazards, and the job being performed. Always choose a helmet that meets the appropriate safety standards for your location and job.

Have a question about personal safety equipment, work clothes, PPE industry? Anbu Safety writer Arlen Wang will find answers to the queries. to submit a question send an email to:

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