Trends in ... hand protection

‘One type of glove cannot address all safety concerns’

Tailoring gloves to the worker and job tasks are key to providing proper hand protection. It’s how employers can “significantly” improve safety, says Tina Perales, national product sales manager – hand, eye and face protection USA and Canada at Honeywell.

“Employers and workers must recognize that one type of glove cannot address all safety concerns,” Perales said. “Different tasks and hazards require specific types of gloves.”

She offered this example: “Gloves designed for high cut resistance may not be suitable for handling hazardous chemicals.”

Tim Noethen, hand safety expert and strategic account manager at Superior Glove, echoed that: “There have been many times where I have been touring an end user’s location and have witnessed the incorrect hand protection used.” 

Added Chris Ellerby, director of industrial safety at Koroyd: “Most impact protection gloves do not allow the hand to function effectively and create muscular fatigue, which can lead to accidents. They are also bulky, cumbersome and prevent the wearer from having the flexibility and dexterity to perform critical tasks safely.”

What can employers do? Work with your employees. Conduct a thorough review of the processes, “speaking directly with the workers and identifying their current challenges,” Perales suggests.

“The key to making the right choice is to thoroughly understand the tasks and hazards involved,” she said.

“Educating the workforce, providing examples of the correct PPE that should be worn, and a better understanding of the ANSI standards should be implemented,” Noethen said. “This will provide a greater reduction (or elimination) in injuries to the hands.”

As Ellerby said, “The safest impact protective gloves are the ones a worker chooses to wear and does not feel the need to remove short term to get the job done.”

Compiled with the assistance of the International Safety Equipment Association

Coming next month:

  • Women’s personal protective equipment

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