Overview of Hand & Foot Personal Protection Equipment

Hand Protection PPE

The selection of appropriate hand PPE is a very important part of workplace safety.  Safety gloves are offered in many different types of protective materials.  Always complete a hazard analysis before selecting PPE.

  • Always use machine guards and do not bypass safety measures.
  • Safety gloves & hazard protection:
    • Metal mesh - resist sharp objects
    • Leather - for rough surfaces
    • Vinyl & neoprene - toxic chemicals
    • Dielectric rubber - electricity
    • Padded cloth - sharp edges, slivers, dirt, and vibration
    • Heat resistant - extreme temperatures
    • Latex disposable - germs, bacteria, and pathogens
    • Lead lined - radiation
  • Always wash hands after work operations

Foot Protection PPE

There are many different foot related injuries that can arise on a job site or in a workplace.  The following are all injuries and possible hazards that should be assessed before selecting proper foot PPE:

  • Impact injuries
  • Spills and splashes
  • Compression injuries
  • Electrical shocks
  • Extreme temperatures and moisture
  • Slipping

Classifying footwear:

  • Metatarsal footwear - protect the entire foot from ankle to toes
  • A reinforced sole - will protect the foot from punctures
  • Latex and rubber footwear - protects from chemicals and prevents slipping
  • PVC footwear - protects against moisture and increases traction
  • Butyl - will protect against ketones, aldehydes, alcohols, acids, salts, and alkalies
  • Vinyl - protects against solvents, acids, alkalies, salts, water, grease, and blood
  • Nitrile - resists animal fats, oils, and chemicals

Always consult government standards for more details.

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