Cut Costs By Preventing Lacerations

Prevent lacerations like the one that made a big scar on this man's hand

Which injury topped the list of OSHA-reported incidents by OSHA Region V contractors for the last two years? Skin lacerations, or cuts, according to a recent meeting of the NECA-IBEW Local Union 701 Safety Committee. Electricians use their hands in expert, coordinated ways when performing difficult tasks in small spaces. Due to the nature of the work, skin lacerations commonly occur. Preventing lacerations can help companies cut costs and avoid physical and financial pain.

Cut Costs

How much does a laceration incident cost a company? Puncture of the skin which affects a person’s ability to work and hurts individual motor skills costs an estimated $50 thousand per incident. How can companies prevent lacerations? Make sure workers use cut-resistant hand gloves to protect people and profit. First, to lower the number of laceration incidents, learn about construction jobs and the personal protective equipment (PPE) needed to keep workers safe. Then, train employees in best practices. Finally, employees should try different makes and models of PPE to get them familiar with the options. Buy the ones they like best, because giving employees choices about PPE will help them feel more comfortable using gloves in the field.

Gloves

How can companies know which gloves to buy? The ANSI/ISEA 105 (2016) standard talks about classes of hand protection and tests for specific things, such as puncture resistance, cut resistance, and abrasion resistance.  In addition, the standard contains details about several different work glove categories. The recommended gloves function well and offer special features to make finger movement easier and give a better grip. Because of this, employees can comfortably wear them while performing tasks such as testing, stripping, bending, twisting, and using tools and supplies. Many manufacturers use advanced technology and materials to make high quality, cut-resistant gloves that  protect workers from sharp edges.

People can prevent lacerations.  Education and proper equipment will protect workers and reduce the cost of incidents on the job. Train and equip your workers with quality cut-resistant gloves and take safety from concept to culture in your organization.

The National Safety Education Center offers customized training for businesses. For more information, e-mail director Pettee Guerrero at nsec@niu.edu

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