Your most important tools are your hands. In everything you do, they are an indispensable instrument, one that you need to take special care of.
Hand protection in our store Contact for PPE-advice
Hands are a vulnerable part of the body. In terms of percentages, the likelihood of injuring your hands is the highest: about 35% of injuries involves the hands. In addition, the costs of injuring your hands are high and chances are the skin will not be able to recover once the damage has been done.
The most common cases where the hands are at risk are the following:
- Mechanical burdening
- Cutting and sticking
- Working with chemicals
- The effects of liquids
- Risk of (extremely) high or low temperatures
- Electrical hazard
- Extreme vibrations or to many vibrations
- Chain saws
General requirements for gloves:
These are requirements regarding, among other things:
- Construction and design
- Harmlessness of construction and materials being used
- Cleaning / maintenance / storage / durability
- Ergonomic qualities
- Comfort / dexterity
- User manual
Protective gloves against mechanical risks.
This standard includes the following performance-related measures:
A: grinding resistance (1-4, 4 = highest)
B: cutting resistance (1-5, 5 = highest)
C: tearing resistance (1-4, 4 = highest)
D: perforation resistance (1-4, 4 = highest)
New since 2016:
E: cutting resistance *TDM-100 test) (A-F, F = highest)
F: shock resistance (P = passed, if the test has been passed)
X: test not conducted/not possible
Protective gloves against chemicals and microorganisms
This standard is divided into a number of sub-standards:
- EN ISO 374-1:2016: description of the technology and performance requirements for chemical risks
- EN ISO 374-2:2014: description of the test method to determine the penetration (permeability)
- EN ISO 16523-1:2015: determination permeation (penetration of the chemicals at a molecular level) under constant material contact
- EN ISO 374-4:2014: description of the test method to determine the resistance against corrosion (degradation of the material)
- EN ISO 374-5:2016: description of the terminology and performance requirements for gloves intended to protect against microbiological risks.
Protective clothes for users of chain saws
- Part 7: Requirements for protective gloves.
Protective gloves against thermic risks (heat and/or fire)
This standard includes the following protection areas:
A: fire behavior (1-4, 4 = highest)
B: contact heat (1-4, 4 = highest)
C: convention heat (1-4, 4 = highest)
D: radiation heat (1-4, 4 = highest)
E: small spatter molten metal (1-4, 4 = highest)
F: large quantities molten metal (1-4, 4 = highest)
Protective gloves against ionizing radiation and radioactive contamination
Gloves that provide protection against cold
This standard includes the following protection areas:
A: conductive cold (1-4 or X, 4 = highest, X = test not carried out/not possible)
B: contact cold (1-4 or X, 4 = highest, X = test not carried out/not possible)
C: water penetration (0, 1 or X, 0 = not watertight, 1 = watertight, X = test not carried out/not possible)
Gloves and arm guards against cuts and stab wounds from hand knives
Protective gloves for fire fighters
Protective gloves for welders
Depending on the performance, the gloves can be divided into two types:
Type A: low dexterity, high other performance indicators (heavy welding)
Type B: high dexterity, lower other performance indicators (for instance for TIG welding) (light welding)
Working with electricity – gloves made from insulated material
Depending on the insulating qualities, the gloves can be divided into six classes: 00-0-1-2-3-4
Protective gloves against mechanical vibrations and shocks
Mechanical vibrations and shocks – Hand-arm vibrations – Method for measuring and assessing transfer of vibrations through gloves at the hand palm area.
Type of gloves
Short gloves that are suitable for all kinds of work activities. Depending on the work involved, they protect against cold, entrapment, cutting, etc. These gloves are very common and come in different versions.
Half-long gloves to halfway the lower arm. Often protect against fire and weld spatter.
In the user manuals of most gloves, using the gloves is generally speaking not recommended when they risk getting caught in (moving) machine parts. With leather gloves, that risk is lower, because the leather comes loose.
Gloves for working with chemicals
When working with chemicals, the most important thing is for gloves to be liquid-proof and resistant to chemicals. Usually, that means they are made from rubber or PVC. Depending on the work involved, the gloves can reach to the wrist, upper arm or the shoulder.
Other types of hand protection
- Cutting-proof gloves,
- Liquid-proof gloves,
- Electricity-insulating gloves,
- Anti-vibration gloves,
- Gloves with impact protection,
- Gloves for specific purposes.
Types of coating
The quality of nitril is that it is sticky, giving in the best grip in dry work, which it maintains when working with oil. However, in water, the stickiness disappears and the grip is lost.
Polyurethane is a light and breathing coating, making the gloves very comfortable and dexterous. Ideal for all-round assembly work. In addition, it maintains its grip in oil and water.
Latex is a comfortable fabric and very suitable for working with liquids. The grip is maintained because the drops simply roll off. Oil, on the other hand, is absorbed by the coating, making the fabric smooth. As long as you are not working with oil, latex gloves are suitable for heavy-duty work, like road work. In terms of coating, there are two options:
- Dipped: Flexible and soft, making them more comfortable to wear.
- Laminated: a firm grip in the hand palm, making them suitable for heavier work.
- Latex: high fabric strength and dexterity
- PVC: flexible, abrasion-resistant and water-repellant. Ideal for working with oil and fat.
- Neoprene: supple fabric for wet and cold circumstances
- PVA: Polyvinyl alcohol is resistant to strong organic solvents. Not suitable for water.
- Viton: Flexible protection against certain chemical risks.
- Butyl rubber: resistant to acids, alkaline and gases. Stays elastic at low temperatures.
The overview presented above is shown in the matric below.
|Coating||Bit sticky||Light and breathing||Flexible and soft|
|Grip with dry work||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Grip with water||No||Yes||Yes|
|Grip with oil||Yes||Yes||No|
|Suitable for very heavy work||No||No||Yes, laminated coating|
How to create comfortability and flexibility?In addition to the safety requirements, comfortability is also an important aspect of most jobs. People need to be able to work for longer times with the protective gear.
- Ventilation: For instance, by using assembly gloves with backsides that are not entirely coated or flock-lined chemical gloves.
- Dexterity: This is determined by the type and thickness of the coating (fabric). Latex, for instance, is a coating for wet circumstances, but it loses its grip with oil, while Nitril is the other way around, offering a better grip with oil that with water.
- Size: Of course, size also plays a role in creating comfortability. Gloves that are two small will squeeze, while gloves that are two large provide poorer grip. Most gloves come in sizes 7 through 11.
Marjorie - PPE-adviser
+31 184-434455 firstname.lastname@example.org