Keys to glove selection

Date Posted
Mike Rich

Each year more than 150,000 people across all industry sectors injury their hand in some manner.

In fact the risk level for a hand injury is so high in a multitude of industries that it has helped to spawn the billion dollar glove industry.

Use the following guidelines to ensure proper glove selection:


  • While working with substances that may cause skin irritation such as chemical burns, wear chemical  resistant or heavy rubber gloves.
  • Electrically insulated gloves are needed for working with electrical hazards.
  • Wear cut resistant metal mesh or Kevlar gloves and take special care while working with glass,  sheet metal, or any material that has the potential to cut and tear.
  • Wear heavy leather, or nitrile coated work gloves to protect your hands while working with, or carrying, block, stone, brick, and concrete that will chafe and tear your skin, in addition the chemicals in mortar and concrete can irritate the skin.
  • While carrying heavy or slippery objects, wear gloves designed for a non-slip grip to prevent slipping and protect your hands.
  • When operating equipment or tools which cause severe shock and vibration, use special anti-vibration gloves which are made to minimize the possibility of injury to the hands from shock and vibration.
  • When working with hot materials, such as welding or using cutting torches, wear welders gloves, or aluminized heat resistant gloves. In extremely cold temperatures, wear heavily insulated thermal gloves
  • Do not wear gloves while operating power tools or machinery where a risk of entanglement may occur. Many unnecessary accidents occur each year because an employee was wearing gloves that became caught in moving parts. Often these accidents result in a loss of fingers or hands.
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