The Right Gloves for the Task at Hand

Many different work sites are operating around the country, and the manner of work may be different from one another, but none of them can afford to disregard hand safety deliberately. The various workers in a site have several day-to-day tasks that require interaction with large equipment, tools, and materials which expose them to a plethora of injuries, especially the hands.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires employers to protect their workers from the various hazards present in their workplaces, and one way of protection is PPE, particularly the gloves for hand safety.

Gloves improve hand safety as a last resort when all other means fail, but one worker can’t use only one type of glove for all the tasks in the worksite.

There are many different types of gloves suited for some tasks and unsuitable for others. Read on to see the various types of gloves and what jobs they are suited for.

Leather Gloves

The versatility of leather gloves allows for a wide range of use among workers. They are known for their excellent grip, resistance to sparks, and protection against sharp and abrasive surfaces. Leather gloves offer protection against moderate levels of heat like the heat from welding. The downside with this type of glove is that they tend to harden and dry when exposed to excessive amounts of heat.

Aluminized Gloves

The heat resistance of aluminized gloves exceeds that of leather gloves as they can withstand up to 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit thanks to their insulating and reflective properties. It is recommended to use them for welding, furnace, and foundry work due to their heat resistance.

Kevlar Gloves

Kevlar gloves made a significant impact on hand protection since they are lightweight and durable, able to withstand cuts and abrasions. Kevlar has heat resistance greater than leather gloves but lesser than aluminized gloves.

Synthetic Gloves

Synthetic gloves give protection for both heat and cold while offering limited protection against cuts and abrasions. They are most suited for handling oils, solvents, grease, bio-hazards, and other chemicals.

Fabric Gloves

Excellent to keep the hands clean from dirt, slivers, chafing, and abrasions, fabric gloves provide a breathable layer between the worker’s hands and the tools handled. Fabric gloves are also nicknamed liners since they tend to function as base layers beneath larger gloves.

Coated Fabric Gloves

Fabric gloves with different coatings can be considered as general purpose gloves since they offer high levels of protection against punctures and cuts, increased protection from alkalines, and improved resistance to chemicals. Some coatings, however, are known to lose some flexibility in cold work environments which reduces insulation.

Butyl Gloves

Typically used when workers will be in extended contact with a particular substance, butyl gloves also provide resistance to water and steam permeation. These chemical-resistant gloves protect against ketones, esters, alcohols, alkali, nitric acid, sulfuric acid, hydrochloric acid, and peroxides. They perform poorly with aliphatic and aromatic hydrocarbons as well as halogenated solvents.

Latex Rubber Gloves

A popular choice as a general purpose glove, latex rubber provide comfort when worn while featuring exceptional tensile strength, elasticity, and temperature resistance. These chemical-resistant gloves protect against most water solutions of acids, alkalis, ketones, and salts.

Neoprene Gloves

Generally superior to natural rubber in terms of chemical and wear resistance, neoprene gloves offer excellent flexibility, finger dexterity, high density, and tear resistance. They are suited for extended contact with hydraulic fluids, gasoline, alcohols, organic acids, and alkalis.

Nitrile Gloves

Nitrile gloves are the best option against chlorinated solvents and other chemicals since they don’t deteriorate as fast as the other gloves after prolonged exposure to particular substances that cause deterioration.

Each glove has different designs which make one more suitable to a task than the other. Knowing which glove goes for a particular task can help save lives and ensure the security of your workers.

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