The use of chemical resistant gloves is common in occupations where workers’ hands are exposed to harmful substances or chemicals or to thermal burns. It is the duty of employers to provide employees with the right gloves so that they can safely perform their jobs.
Assessing the Chemical Hazard
To understand a potential hazard, an employer may hire an expert known as a safety officer. The safety officer will perform a hazard assessment which will reveal what kind of chemicals or substances workers performing a certain role will come into contact with. Subsequently, the toxic properties of the chemicals and substances should be understood.
Choosing the Right Glove
Once an expert has performed a hazard assessment and learned what substances and chemicals workers are likely to handle while they perform their jobs, the need to find a glove made from a polymer that offers protection against such chemicals should be performed.
There are specific polymers to protect workers from certain class of chemicals. Often a polymer that protects against a certain hazardous chemical also protects other chemicals of the same class. Importantly, because gloves are made from different kinds of polymers it is crucial that workers be equipped with gloves made of the right material for the job at hand.
Gloves Are a Trade-Off
Generally people are most dexterous when working with their bare hands. This often means that by wearing gloves, even when it is demanded in a specific job, it becomes slightly difficult to carry out the duties assigned. So it is important to select gloves that are best suited for a particular task.
Choosing the right glove means more than just picking the best fitting glove. For instance, when people work in a laboratory they are required to handle delicate beakers and test tubes which requires significant dexterity. Such workers must be equipped with gloves that allow them to handle fragile equipment and that also protect them from the chemicals they come into contact with.
Properties of 3 Materials Used to Make Gloves
There are different types of materials gloves may be made from and such materials offer protection from one or more specific class of substances or chemicals. The cost of gloves also depends on the kind of materials used to make the glove. KARAM Industries use the following materials to make high-quality gloves.
Gloves made from latex are the most common type used in the medical and food services industry. Latex does not provide protection from a specific class of chemicals yet does offer protection from bloodborne pathogens. Latex gloves are relatively inexpensive.
Nitrile gloves are also relatively inexpensive and are used very commonly by chemical manufacturers. Gloves made from this material offer good resistance against petroleum solvents. They are also used in the medical profession as they offer protection against fats and oils found inside the human body.
When there is a need to protect workers against a broad range of chemicals, Neoprene is the best choice. Such gloves provide excellent protection against acids, oils, inks, and alcohols. As gloves made from neoprene are flexible they allow wearers to easily grip objects and to also perform somewhat delicate tasks.
Gloves are among the most common PPE in existence and are used in a wide range of industries. Knowing that there is a lot more to gloves than simply the size of a wearer’s hand is the first step to recognize the usefulness of safety gloves. Thoughtful employers who provide the ideal safety gloves to their workers stand to be rewarded with a happier and more productive workforce.