DPI 3 categories to: how and which ones to choose?

11 November 2022

The PPE of 3rd category, for those who have just crossed the threshold of the world of safety, are personal protective equipment used, precisely, to protect the worker from any accidents. Of course, the conditions and cases state that it is not enough to have PPE in order to have permanent immunity, but at least they allow you to protect yourself from those injuries that,  if they occurred, could otherwise cause greater damage or even lead to fatal accidents.

What does the standard provide?

With Legislative Decree no. 17/2019 the legislation is adapted to the provisions of European Regulation 2016/425 which establishes the requirements for the  design and manufacture of PPE, also amending Legislative  Decree 81/2008, which remains a reference both for the choice of the device related to the work that will be carried out and is a regulatory reference for the training of personnel in the use of the same (Legislative Decree 81/08 chapter II).

Pending the new Decree that will update the references to the technical regulations contained in the Ministerial Decree of 2 May 2001, the  latter updated with the technical standards in force (UNI) applies.

The norms andtechniques are reported in the Ministerial Decree of 2 May 2001 and are defined as good practice standards.

Table Main technical standards currently in force referring to PPE as described in the table (updated to 5 April 2022).

Description UNI standard in force
Hearing protectors- Recommendations for selection, use, care and maintenance- Guidance document UNI EN 458:2016
Guide to the selection, use and maintenance of respiratory protective equipment, in applicationto UNI EN 529:2006 UNI EN 529:2006 integrated by UNI 11719:2018
Eye and Face Protection – Guide to Selecting, Using and Maintaining UNI EN ISO 19734:2021
Protection of the lower limbs – Safety, protective and work footwear – criteria for selection, use, care and maintenance UNI/TR 11430:2011
Head protection – Personal protective equipment – Protective helmets – selection guide UNI 11114:2004
Protection against falls from height – Personal protective equipment against falls from height – Guide for selection and use UNI 11158:2015

Which PPE to choose?

It should be clarified that PPE is designed using materials with technical characteristics according to work use. The standard provides that once the risks have been assessed, the appropriate systems are then identified in order toreduce those risks In fact, in order to indicate the work area to users, PPE is divided into categories, namely:

  • PPE category I: personal protective equipment that protects against minimal risks (risk sheet I category)
  • Category II PPE: Category II includes risks other than those listed in categories I and III.
  • PPE category III: personal protective equipment which protects against very serious risks and causes irreversible damage (scheda risks III category)

To verify the belonging and compliance with the regulations connected to the PPE identified, it is possible to consult the mandatory marking in the manual and on any labels of the individual device.

PPE of anycategory is covered by the EU declaration of conformity referred to in Article 15 of the PPE Regulation (EU) 2016/425

The main data for identification are as follows:

  1. CE marking
  2. EU declaration of conformity (The CE marking is subject tothe general principles laid down in Article 30 of Regulation (EC) No 765/2008. )
  3. For PPE category III, the CE marking shall be followed by the identification number of the notified body
    involved in the procedure laid down in Annex VII or VIII
  4. The identification number of the notified body shall be affixed by the body itself or, in accordance with its instructions, by the
    manufacturer or his authorised representative.
  5. Technical documentation
  6. Obligations describedin the PPE Regulation with reference to Article 8(6) and Article 10

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PPE 3 category and falls from height

Article 115 of Legislative Decree 81/08 contains the standardization of protection systems relatedto work at height that can cause falls from height. In the case of PPE related to the regulated subject, we find Annex VIII interesting, which gives general  and non-exhaustive indications of the activities and sectors of activity for which it may be necessary to make personal protective equipment available.

On the basis of the risk assessment, it shall be determined whether the use of personal protective equipment is necessary and, if so, what characteristics suchequipment should have in accordance with the
provisions of this Directive.  

Risks Body part
concerned Type
personal protective equipment
Examples of activities where it may be
necessary to use the corresponding type of
personal protective equipment (*)
Sectors and branches of industry
Falls from height Whole body
Personal protective
for the prevention or
arrest of falls
from height
– Work on constructionsystems-
Installation of prefabricated elements- Work on
pylons- Work on roofs- Work on
vertical or sloping surfaces- Work in elevated crane cabins- Work in
elevated cabs
of stacker cranes- Work in elevated operating positions on
drilling towers
– Work in
wells and sewers
– Construction-
Civil engineering works-
Infrastructure maintenance


How long do PPE last?

Many PPE may be ageing and therefore deteriorate, so that the Regulation requires the manufacturer toaffix to the PPE, where possible, the month and year of manufacture and  /or, where appropriate, the year and month of expiry of the  PPE.

If it is not possible to indicate the abovementioned information on the life of the individual protective device, themanufacturer, as described in Annex II in section 2.4, must indicate in the manual all relevant information for determining the month and year and any indication of the maximum number of cleaning operations beyond which it is appropriateto revise or replace the PPE.

Ask for more information for your PPE. Visit the online shop.

What are the penalties for violating IPR rules?

The sanctions are established, for most cases, in Legislative Decree 81/08 art 14 co. 1 and co. 9 and  in Annex I with description by case and amount related to the violation.


CASE Additional amount
1 Failure to prepare the risk assessment document 2.500 €
2 Failure to draw upthe Emergency Plan and evacuation 2.500 €
3 Lack of education and training 300 € for each worker
4 Failure to set up the prevention and protection service and
appointment of the relative manager
3.000 €
5 Security Operational Plan (SOP) failure to be processed 2.500 €
6 Failure to provide personal protective equipment against
falls froma height
300 € for each worker
7 Lack of vacuum protection 3.000 €
8 Failure to apply support reinforcements, without prejudice to the
requirements of the technical report on soil consistency
3.000 €
9 Work near power lines in the absence of
suitable organizational and procedural provisions to protect workers from the
consequent risks
3.000 €
10 Presence of live naked conductors in the absence of
organizational and procedural provisions suitable to protect workers from the
consequent risks
3.000 €
11 Lack of protection against direct and indirect contacts (earthing system, circuit breaker
, residual current circuit breaker)
3.000 €
12 Failure to supervise there-installation or modification of
safety or signalling or control devices
3.000 €
12-bis Failure to notify the supervisory authority before the start of work which
may involve a risk of exposure to asbestos
3.000 €



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