Chemical Resistant Gloves Improve Your Department’s Glove Safety Plan
When employees are required to handle chemicals, it is important that they are equipped with the correct personal protective equipment for the chemical they are handling. As part of your glove safety plan, chemical resistant gloves must be used to protect employees’ hands. Before selecting the chemical resistant gloves for your glove safety plan, here are some questions to consider:
- What types of chemicals are being handled?
- What is the nature of contact? Is it total immersion or only splashes?
- What is the duration of contact?
- Is it just the hand that needs protecting, or the forearm and arm as well?
- What kind of grip is needed?
After the hazards are determined, it is time to select the proper glove. OSHA recognizes that chemical resistant gloves can be made from different kinds of rubber. The thicker the glove material, the greater the chemical resistance. However, thick gloves may impair an employees grip.
Common Chemical Resistant Gloves You Might Need In Your Glove Safety Plan
- Butyl Gloves
- Natural (Latex) Rubber Gloves
- Neoprene Gloves
- Nitrile Gloves
While these are only a few common gloves, some chemicals require specific gloves. Check the MSDS/SDS for this information.
Employees must also be properly trained in glove safety and the use and care of chemically resistant gloves. Each employee must be aware of:
- Why chemically resistant gloves are required
- How the gloves will protect them
- The proper way to put on and take off their gloves
- How to ensure their gloves fit properly
- Ways to identify signs of wear
- Proper cleaning and storage
As with any type of PPE, chemical resistant gloves should be the last line of defense. Engineering controls, procedures, or processes must always be considered first.