OSHA lawyers are often approached with similar questions regarding Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) compliance on construction sites. Which personal protective equipment (PPE) is best for protecting workers? How do you ensure that every single employee is following the workplace safety guidelines established by OSHA?
When considering the best hand and arm protection for your team, it can be easy to get lost in the dizzying number of options available on the market. In parts one and two of this four-part series, we explored common sources of hand and arm injury and discussed how to choose protective gloves. In this article, we will take an in-depth look at the different types of hand and arm protection.
Leather, Canvas, or Metal Mesh Gloves
Gloves made from leather, canvas, or metal mesh are sturdy and protect the operator against cuts and burns. These materials are commonly used because they are cheap to produce and effective against an array of potential hazards including heat. However, unlike metal mesh gloves, leather and canvas gloves are suitable for protection against sustained heat.
Leather: Protects the wearer against sparks, moderate levels of heat, blows, chips, and rugged objects.
Aluminized gloves: Utilize an insert composed of synthetic materials to provide the wearer with reflective and insulating protection against heat and cold.
Aramid fiber gloves: Comfortable gloves that guard the wearer against heat and cold. They are also cut and abrasive-resistant.
Synthetic gloves: Although these materials don’t protect the wearer against alkalis and solvents, they do protect the wearer’s hands against heat and cold, plus they are cut and abrasive-resistant and can resist certain diluted acids.
Fabric and Coated Fabric Gloves
If your team requires functional protection against minor hazards, fabric and coated fabric gloves are your best option. These gloves are most commonly made of cotton or other similar fabrics.
Fabric gloves: Suitable for protection against dirt, slivers, chafing, and abrasions. These gloves can be easily punctured or cut by sharp, heavy materials.
Coated fabric gloves: Generally manufactured from cotton flannel with napping on one side and a plastic membrane on the other, coated fabric gloves are considered “general-purpose” hand and arm protection that boosts grip and prevents exposure to hazardous chemicals.
With countless options for protective wear, it can be difficult to choose the right PPE for the job. Fortunately, an OSHA lawyer can help you choose the ideal PPE for your project. In part four, we will explore chemical and liquid-resistant gloves and learn about the standard procedures for caring for your PPE.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.