ISEA Updates Hand Protection Standard with Cut-Resistance Criteria

Updates reflected in the current edition focus on distinct test methods to determine a glove’s abrasion resistance depending on the material type, and cited test methods to ensure they represent the state of the art in materials performance and technology.

American National Standard for Hand Protection Selection Criteria (ANSI/ISEA 105-2011), first published in 2000, is designed to assist users and employers in the appropriate selection of gloves for identifiable workplace hazards that could result in chemical burns, severe cuts and lacerations, and burns caused by heat and flame exposures.

Like previous editions, ANSI/ISEA 105-2011 uses a numeric rating scheme for classifying hand protection against a variety of performance assessments. Updates reflected in the current edition focus on distinct test methods to determine a glove’s abrasion resistance depending on the material type, and cited test methods to ensure they represent the state of the art in materials performance and technology.

Perhaps the most notable update to the standard is the acceptance of different ASTM methods for evaluating cut-resistance performance. Some studies show that nearly 20 percent of workplace injuries involve cuts and lacerations to the hand and fingers, prompting ISEA members to focus on ways to provide meaningful information in this critical area.

ANSI/ISEA 105-2011 was developed by ISEA’s Hand Protection Group and was reviewed by a consensus panel representing chemical handling professionals, testing facilities, utility providers, and government agencies.

“As leaders in cut-resistance solutions, ISEA members spent a significant amount of time trying to reconcile the differences between the varying cut-resistance methodologies that are widely accepted in the industry,” said Matt Reid, America area manager for DSM Dyneema and ISEA Hand Protection Group chairman. “We believe that allowing both test protocols represents the transition toward a single evaluation method, with appropriate classification levels, without creating a gap in a much-needed user resource.”

To this end, the updated document includes standardized template for use in classifying gloves specifically designed to protect against cuts. Educating users on how to use the data in the selection process will be key.

“It will be important for end users to ensure that any comparison between gloves, first and foremost, be based on the same test method,” Reid noted. “ISEA member companies keenly understand that there is a wealth of information in the market to help in the glove selection process. We are certain that ISEA’s standardized template will be a valuable tool to streamline comparisons and make the decision process easier.”

The standard can be purchased from ISEA for $33 a copy; discounts are available on bulk orders.

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