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Last updated: June 29, 2019

What Does Kevlar Mean?

Kevlar is hand protection in the context of workplace safety equipment. It refers to Kevlar synthetic fiber gloves and sleeves that are heat-resistant and are of indispensable value to workers in various industry verticals.

With the goal being a solution to heat exposure on the work floor that can lead to burns and injury to the hands, the protection mechanism that arguably works best would be Kevlar gloves and sleeves. The use of these gloves and sleeves is in line with recommended safety standards for workers.

Safeopedia Explains Kevlar

Invented by Polish-American chemist Stephanie Kwolek and branded as Kevlar, poly-para phenylene terephthalamide has a number of uses in many niche industries and is used in the manufacture of various goods and products. According to the manual titled "Personal Protective Equipment," which serves as a set of recommendations for employers by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), a division of the U.S. Department of Labor, the use of hand protective gear is integral to the safety of workers. Kevlar hand protection aligns with OSHA's recommendations for thermal hand protection for workers in various industries, including but not limited to the petrochemical industry, iron and steel plants, mining, pharmaceuticals fabrication, paper mining, power plants, and the glasswork industry.

Furthermore, Kevlar hand protection also includes protective sleeves in tubular-knit form, which protect exposed areas of the upper body from the wrists to the shoulders. This protective gear additionally withstands the damage that can be caused by sharp objects in the work environment. It provides double-protection in glasswork factories, sheet metal industries, boiler rooms, and various other working environments wherein heat exposure and sharp objects are a threat to worker safety.

According to OSHA's recommendations, employers are responsible for training workers in the use of personal protective equipment (PPE), including Kevlar hand protection. The onus is on employers to insist on the use of this protective gear when deemed necessary throughout training programs. Training should also include instructional modules that account for the limitations of Kevlar hand protection, as well as the maintenance, viability timeline, and disposal of all PPE, including any Kevlar items.


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PPESafety EquipmentHand ProtectionHand and Arm Protection

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