Happy Birthday to The Hard Hat

Happy Birthday to The Hard Hat
Oct 8, 2019

2019 marks the 100 year anniversary of the first commercially produced hard hats. Credit for the invention is commonly given to Edward W. Bullard, who returned to the United States following service in World War I and, inspired by the helmets he wore and observed in the war, created what would become the first generation of hard hats. Initially, the hard hats were made of steamed canvas – leading them to be labeled “Hard Boiled” hats. In the years since, their use would grow in popularity and the steamed canvas would be replaced by metal and now, plastic.

In the last hundred years, hard hats have saved countless lives and prevented many serious injuries. Many workers today could probably not imagine performing their jobs without this protection. As attorneys who represent people hurt by unsafe job sites or defective work equipment, the hundred year anniversary of the hard hat represents both the progress made in workplace safety and the never-ending need for further evolution and improvement. As technology improves and as the importance of protecting workers becomes widely accepted, there is no excuse for asking workers to perform unsafe jobs or to work with poorly designed equipment.

So we wish a Happy Birthday to the hard hat and make the wish that it will continue to be only the beginning of the end of preventable workplace injuries and death.