dimanche 27 juillet 2014

Never Under-Estimate The Importance Of Work Gloves

By Miranda Sweeney

Safety wear is a mandatory element in the equipment that tradespeople and scientists use in their work. There are many threats to the human body in modern industry, and for some workers this clothing is not merely a fashion statement. Today's professions are full of risks and possible accidents, so people need to maintain the correct attitude towards safety. That attitude should also involve the right work gloves.

Gloves are used to protect their wearer against several kinds of hazard. The most common one is physical injury through strain, friction or incision. Even the handles of basic tools like pliers or axes can lead to grazes and calluses, or muscular trouble. Some workers don't wear hand protection when using these tools, since their hands are accustomed to them. But even they sometimes cut themselves or lose fingers, injuries which would not have happened if they had invested more in their safety clothing.

Resistance to temperature is another application. Very high temperatures occur in many manufacturing and processing environments. Human hands have a feeble resistance to temperature, lasting no more than a few seconds and not even beyond a comparatively mild heat. Turning up the geyser too high is an example of that. Burn wounds are serious because they have the associated possibility of infection and they sometimes mean a long period without wages.

Low temperatures also require protective gear. The skin needs protection against the cold, but workers also need to have enough hand motion to do their jobs. Their gear should accommodate both these requirements. The cold is easily able to damage the skin, as shown by mountain hikers who reportedly discarded their gloves in trying to deal with an emergency and then had frostbite afterwards.

Industry sometimes also involves the use of poisonous or corrosive chemicals. The human body cannot withstand these chemicals. Some of them destroy tissue or cause death in minutes. Biological waste, such as medical refuse, may contain infectious viruses or bacteria, some of them terminal in nature.

Some substances are so corrosive that they destroy human tissue on contact. Acids are typical examples, but there are others, such as benzene. Caustic soda is another, and is so strong that only PVC material offers significant protection against it and only for a matter of hours. Deciding on the appropriate material to wear depends on the substance in question and the concentration in which it is present.

In medicine, laboratory and other personnel sometimes have to transport or analyse samples of contagious germs. This can be stressful, given that some of these pathogens cause terminal illnesses, so protective gear is a source of reassurance and supports the professional disposition that medical workers are supposed to maintain at all times. For example, workers treating AIDS patients sometimes become infected by needle-stick accidents. Staff also avoid coming into contact with blood or other fluids during surgery. They may use nitrile gloves or the thinner latex option. The latter allows better manual dexterity during operations.

Some occupations would be impossible without the use of safety gear. A hand injury, if permanent, has the potential to lead to unemployment. Taking hold of your safety is an important part of staying professional and staying safe.

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