Use the the right tool — and glove — for the right job

TUCKER PAVING team members use a wide assortment of tools — hundreds maybe — to do their construction and, sometimes, deconstruction (demolition) work each day. These tools range from hand tools like hammers, to hammer-down pile drivers and pulverizers, to massive and motorized loaders, dozers, and excavators.

Big on safety and the common sense that goes into it, we always work by the shop adage “Use the right tool for the right job.” Many would add a third point and say, “Use the right tool, for the right job, in the right way.” This adage works at home and on the job for tools of the wood, metal, plastic, and mechanized kind — hardware — but it can be applied also to a kind of “soft wear” that most of our construction team members use each day for personal injury protection. That would be a pair of gloves.

Any old pair of gloves won’t always work best for any old job in the workplace and often for around the home. For that reason, gloves have been compared and rated — particularly for professional or workplace environments — for cut level, impact resistance, chemical resistance, and anti-vibration. Authoritative sources for work gloves and hand safety include ANSI and OSHA.

ANSI is the 100-year-old American National Standards Institute, the organization that sets the standards for personal protective equipment (PPE). ANSI regularly works hand-in-hand (pun intended) with OSHA, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, an agency of the U.S. Department of Labor. OSHA’s mission is to assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women by setting and enforcing workplace standards.

ANSI/ISEA 105-2016 is the ANSI technical standard that addresses the classification and testing of hand protection — gloves — for specific performance properties related to mechanical, chemical and industrial applications. Learn more here.

OSHA mandates for hand protection fall within standard 1910.138. The technical details can be found here.

For those who don’t want to get into the technical language of the ANSI and OSHA hand-protection standards, other good resources about glove classifications, comparisons, and ratings can be found all over the World Wide Web. Below are just a few of the better glove-related resources and links to them.

  • Safety at Hand: Use the Right Glove for Proper Hand Protection (from the National Safety Council) — Website link

  • A Basic Guide for Selecting the Proper Gloves (Occupational Health & Safety) — Website link

Here’s another link, to Shout Slogans, with its page full of safety quips about hand safety. For the blog topic of the day, here’s a good one that fits: “Using safety gloves is all in your hands.”