Safety gloves are safety gloves, right? And as long as your staff has PPE, they’re protected? If only it was as simple as that! Choosing the right PPE for each task is key. If you select the wrong equipment, your team may be at an increased risk of accidents and injuries.
How Cut resistance is measured and tested.
To help you identify which safety gloves are right for specific jobs, the gloves are given a Cut Resistance level, from A-F. These ratings are determined depending on the level of protection they offer against blades, glass, and sharp objects. To work out the Cut Level, a sample of the glove is cut until the material is fully lacerated. The number of newtons required to sever the glove decides the Cut Resistance Level, with Level A being just 2-5 newtons and Level F being 30+ newtons before the material is split.
What do the various cut levels protect me from?
Cut Level A-B safety gloves offer a low level of protection against sharp objects, so are most suited to tasks like general handling and packaging. These gloves are thinner than the higher-level options, so allow greater flexibility and dexterity and can be used for tasks that require fine motor skills.
If the task includes some contact with sharp, but not razor-sharp, objects, Cut Level C-D work gloves are more suitable. They are particularly useful for the construction industry, including electrical work, plumbing, and general handling. Cut Level C-D gloves can be used for work that involves some contact with sharp metal edges, glass, or blades. Whilst they do not offer as much protection as Cut Level F gloves, they are typically more flexible, so provide the user with more finger control. These gloves can be used in construction roles, the automotive industry, and glass handling, or other areas where there is a possibility that hands may be cut.
The highest degree of protection is offered by Level E-F Cut Resistance gloves; they win hands down. These gloves are durable enough to also resist punctures and tears, making them appropriate for workers in hazardous environments. They lower the risk of injury for staff that come into contact with sharp objects and blades or handle metal, glass or waste, on a daily basis.
Many considerations then! What cut level is right for me?
When assessing your cut resistance requirements there are many questions you need to ask…
- Accident record: number of hand injuries; Major? Minor?
- What is your main cause of cuts? Glass? Blades? Etc?
- What types of gloves are currently in use and have they been preventing injury?
- Are staff not using their cut-resistant gloves because of lack of dexterity preventing them from carrying out their work?
Stronghold Global can help you decide the necessary Cut Resistance Level for your business with a 30-minute workplace risk analysis. Just contact one of our experts on 0845 208 4500 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.