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Bump Cap

What Does Bump Cap Mean?

A bump cap is a type of safety equipment that provides protection for the head.

Bump caps are a form of personal protective equipment (PPE); however, they are not used for situations in which an employer faces an obligation to provide employees with head protection for the purpose of avoiding serious injury. Rather, they are used to provide head protection in low-risk situations to reduce exposure to lacerations, abrasions, and other injuries such as minor bumps to the head. The use of a bump cap is not appropriate for any situation in which the use of ANSI-standards-compliant head protection is required.

Safeopedia Explains Bump Cap

Bump caps can be contrasted with “hard hats,” which refer to PPE head protection certified to provide a large degree of protection to workers, and which meet the head-protection requirements of occupational health and safety authorities such as OSHA.

Because bump caps are not standards-compliant, they are generally used in lower-risk situations. These include environments with low ceiling clearances that may carry a risk of employees sustaining minor injury due to hitting their head on the ceiling or other low-hanging structures. In general, a bump cap is only used to protect a worker against contact with stationary objects, whereas a standards-compliant hard hat or other piece of recognized head-protective equipment provides protection against more significant hazards, such as the impact of a falling object that could otherwise result in a fatal injury.

In some jurisdictions, bump caps are subject to their own specific safety certification requirements. For instance, in Europe, a bump cap must meet requirements laid out under Europe’s EN 812:2012 standard. The requirements set out in these standards are still not recognized by European health and safety agencies as providing sufficient protection for cases where a hard hat would be required. Whether or not employees should be required to wear bump caps is therefore a determination that employers must make as part of their workplace hazard assessment process.


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