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Head protection such as hard hats must be worn to prevent serious injury to the head. Failing to wear a hard hat in industries such as construction puts you at risk of receiving a serious injury or death.
Overall hard hats work to protect the total surface area of the head and face. They function to protect the skull, and soft tissues of the face. For example, shields on custom hard hats protect the soft tissue of the eyes and ears, which are susceptible to spills and objects entering them respectively.
However, one of the main reasons why a hard hat is needed, in potentially dangerous areas, is the amount of protection it gives to the brain. Many brain injuries have resulted from people choosing not to wear a hard hat. They might feel the situation they are working in is routine work, or not dangerous at all. Yet, no one can predict when something heavy will fall on your head. So instead of just debating the merits of hard hats, ensure your safety by wearing one.