On-the-job hand injuries are exceedingly common and, in many cases, preventable. Hand injuries can have negative consequences for both the worker and the organisation, therefore proper hand protection and a safety-first culture are crucial steps in reducing the prevalence of non-fatal occupational injuries to hands.

What Do The Statistics Say?

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that, out of the 286 150 non-fatal occupational injuries to upper extremities in 2017, 42% of those involved hands (ohsonline.com). What is interesting is that fingers topped this list when it came to injuries with hands and wrists coming in second; especially in industries like mining and offshore oil & gas. While hand injuries are preventable, they cannot be eliminated entirely so it’s crucial that workers wear the right glove for the right task.

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The Risks of Not Wearing the Right Gloves

Non-fatal occupational injuries have a cost to both the organisation and the employee. Injuries result in unforeseen downtime thereby affecting production capacity and output which ultimately affects the organisation’s bottom line. If an employee is injured on duty, the employer is liable to pay worker’s compensation to cover the loss of income caused by the injury. Due to injury, the victim may suffer lasting damage which can diminish their ability to perform their job as they did before. It’s for these reasons that preventing occupational injuries to the hands is extremely important.

Functioning hands are essential in almost every industry and occupation. Fingers and hands are naturally prone to injuries, and with 27 bones in the hands, the risk of injury becomes even greater. Interestingly, hand injuries are the second most common type of workplace injury (ohsonline.com) yet they are also preventable. Preventing hand injuries on the job begins with wearing the correct glove for the task, yet many people do not wear any protective wear on their hands at all. Statistics report that 70% of workers in the US don’t wear any sort of protective gear on their hands, and the 30% who do are not wearing the correct glove (ohsonline.com). Wearing certified gloves is crucial as the certification indicates the level of protection provided by the glove and that it is suited to the risk that the wearer faces. Previously, US standards for gloves did not adequately address the prevalence of injuries to the back of the hand; however, the new standard ANSI 138 2019 addresses all types of hand injuries including impact injuries. The gloves a person wears must be certified according to the safety standards for their industry and of their country or region and PPE that does not comply to the correct standard puts the wearer at greater risk.

The Right CHARNAUD® Gloves for You

If preventing injury to the hands is as simple as wearing gloves, then why do workers choose not to do so? Perhaps a lack of knowledge and awareness means that most workers don’t know that they’re wearing the wrong type of glove? It’s vital that employers provide adequate training about on-the-job risks and wearing the correct PPE. Understanding the importance of the right glove for the intended task is one step closer to ensuring that the risk of hand injuries is reduced. CHARNAUD® manufacture and supply a variety of gloves for a range of industries including the electrical industry. The A16 glove is a certified electrical arc flash glove which provides up to 16 calories of protection. As with all CHARNAUD® PPE, the calorie rating is prominently displayed on the back of the glove so that the wearer can easily verify they are wearing the correct glove for the job. The A16 glove not only protects the wearer in the event of an electrical arc flash, but it also provides high cut resistance. Reducing physical fatigue is important, especially for electrical workers who rely on their hands to perform complex tasks that require fine motor skills. Wearing the right glove also means wearing a glove that is comfortable, flexible, has good grip and excellent dexterity. These factors help to reduce the unnecessary strain which causes physical fatigue and increases the chance of error.

Get Your Protection Gloves from CHARNAUD® Today

Accidents cannot be entirely avoided but wearing the correct glove can help reduce the risk of injury to the wearer. Human error and complacency can lead to lapses in safety, so it’s vital that the organisation conduct regular safety training sessions and awareness campaigns. Understanding precisely how your gloves work to protect you will help in creating an organisational culture that prioritises occupational safety. Once a worker can experience the protection the glove offers on the job, he or she will begin to understand the true value of the PPE in keeping them safe and making their job easier. In order to obtain the correct advice, let one of our product specialists at CHARNAUD® guide you in selecting the right glove for the right task- contact us now.

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