A builder’s hands are his livelihood, yet despite recognition of the hazards many fail to look after their hands properly. Why? Globus investigates.
The majority of hand injuries are sustained because the individual was not wearing gloves. Often the problem wasn’t that they hadn’t been provided with them; but that they didn’t have a pair that enabled them to perform the task properly. Builders remove gloves because they fear not being able to do the job properly, not because they don’t recognise the risks. Once it has been removed the risk of injury is increased.
Discomfort and/or inability to perform the task at hand are often the main concerns. Specific issues cited include the fact that gloves don’t fit properly, either being too large or too small. Properly fitted gloves follow the hand’s natural contours, eliminating stress against the thumb. Those that are too big can reduce dexterity, causing workers to struggle to perform certain tasks. And gloves that are too small can restrict blood flow and movement which can motivate fatigue.
However, technology has come a very long way in recent years and there is no reason for the gloves provided to be anything but fit for purpose. Advancements in fabrics and coating science mean that they can now protect hands from cuts, puncture injuries, impacts, chemical burns, temperature extremes and liquid contaminants. However, hand injury issues can often result simply because the gloves don’t fit properly or that inadequate choices are provided.
Brian Johnson, the Managing Director at Halton Construction and Surveying Services Ltd based in the North West, said “The Showa 306 glove from Globus is having a really positive effect on my business. My team are out working on sites in all weathers and often complain about how their hands become uncomfortable in wet weather. Not only does the 306 overcome this, but it also stops their hands from getting sweaty in normal conditions. We are also getting far more wear from this glove compared to the previous ones; it’s not uncommon for the bricklayers to get two to three weeks of use from just one pair! This has become our glove of choice for all our manual handling work, whatever the weather.”
There are many hand protection solutions for builders, no matter what the task is. It is important to choose a glove that fits well, is suitable for the task, provides adequate grip and conforms to appropriate legislation requirements.
Specialist advice about glove selection should be sought for specific hazards to ensure the appropriate product is selected (to protect the business and employees). This will help safeguard you and your workers from the start and can reduce the number of days off through injury or illness leading to increased productivity for building projects. Globus is located in Manchester and has a portfolio of safety gloves available nationwide through major builders’ merchants and PPE distributors.
For further information on Globus Gloves visit www.globus.co.uk