Hand Protection


This safety session should teach employees to:

Understand job-related hazards that could harm hands.
Know how to select and use gloves to protect hands.
Applicable Regulations: 29 CFR 1910.132, .138

  1. Hands and Fingers Need Protection from Injuries and Other Health Hazards
    OSHA requires employers to provide employees with hand protection to prevent:
    • Absorption of harmful substances
    • Severe cuts, lacerations, abrasions, or punctures
    • Chemical, heat, or electrical burns
    • Extreme heat or cold
    • Bloodborne pathogens

  2. Gloves Are an Important Form of Hand Protection
    They provide an effective barrier between the hand and the hazard.
    • Don't wear gloves if they create a greater hazard; e.g., catching in a machine.

  3. Select Gloves Designed to Protect Against Your Specific Job Hazards
    Insulated gloves protect against heat and cold.
    • Choose fire-retardant materials for exposure to open flames.
    • Choose reflective materials for exposure to radiant heat.
    • Neoprene, rubber, vinyl, and other materials protect against chemicals.
    • No gloves protect against all chemicals; check the MSDS for instructions.
    • Special insulated rubber gloves protect against electrical shock and burns.
    • Metal mesh or other cut-resistant gloves protect against sharp objects.
    • Leather gloves protect against rough surfaces, chips and sparks, and moderate heat.
    • Cotton gloves protect against dirt, splinters, and abrasion and help grip slippery objects.
    • Cotton is not good protection for use with rough, sharp, or heavy materials.

  4. Inspect Gloves Before Putting Them On·   
    Don't wear them if they're torn, cracked, or otherwise damaged.
    • Make sure they cover hands completely with a snug, but not uncomfortable, fit.
    • Bandage cuts or scrapes before putting on chemical-resistant gloves.
    • Other PPE Can Provide Added Hand Protection

  5. Hand pads can protect against heat, rough surfaces, and splinters.
    • You can't wear hand pads if you're doing delicate work.
    • Thumb or finger guards or tapes can provide extra protection on dangerous jobs.
    • Long cuffs, wristlets, and duct tape can keep chemicals or heat outside the glove.
    • Barrier creams can help protect skin when gloves can't be worn.  However, a barrier cream is not a substitute for a glove.
    • Creams must be applied frequently and only on clean skin.

  6. Remove Chemical-Protective Gloves With Special Care
    Rinse gloves thoroughly before taking them off.
    • Remove contaminated gloves so contamination doesn't touch your skin.·   
    • Wash hands thoroughly after removing gloves.
    • Place gloves in the proper containers for decontamination or disposal.
    • Store clean gloves right side out, cuffs unfolded, in a cool, dark, dry place.

  7. Take Other Precautions to Protect Your Hands
    • Don't clean your hands with solvents or industrial detergents.
    • Check materials for sharp edges, splinters, hot or cold temperatures, etc., before handling them.
    • Keep your hands away from moving machine parts.
    • Always cut away from your body.

  8. Respond Quickly and Correctly to Hand Injuries
    • Chemical contact: Wash skin thoroughly for 15 minutes.
    • Cut: If large and bleeding, apply direct pressure and raise hand over the shoulder.
    • If small, wash with soap and warm water and cover with a sterile bandage.
    • Burn: Soak a minor burn in cold water and cover with a sterile bandage.
    • Get immediate medical help for a burn that's charred or blistered.
    • Amputation: Put the body part on ice and go with it to a hospital immediately.
    • Broken bones: Keep the hand still and get medical attention.

Conclusion: Hands Are Always on the Job and Need Protection Against Hazards
Wear the proper gloves and take every precaution to protect your hands against injury, burns, and exposure to hazardous substances.

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