According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, employers should provide their personnel with personal protective equipment if it’s not feasible to employ an engineering solution when addressing an existing workplace hazard. While this might make it seem PPE is an inferior hazard protection solution, this couldn’t be farther from the truth.
Rather than being 2nd tier protection, PPE is often the more practical solution against workplace hazards. For example, there are a number of welding tasks wherein your human welder can be replaced with a robotic one. However, these machines may be too expensive, or lack analytical thinking of a person. Consequently, it’s more practical to provide your worker with PPE, in this case protective eyewear.