Cut Resistant Clothing In Glass Production And Processing

CutPRO® Cut Resistant Clothing has become an essential piece of PPE in glass production and processing plants.  Such plants can be dangerous places to work. They combine the ‘standard’ hazards of any industrial manufacturing facility with a pretty heavy, rather difficult-to-handle and indeed very breakable material.

Not many other industries handle products and raw materials that are as dangerous as glass.

The American Bureau of Labor Statistics states that in 2015, the flat glass manufacturing segment reported an incidence rate of 5.7 injuries or illnesses per 100 full-time worker. A figure higher than the total injury rate of 3.8 for all manufacturing and 4.7 for all non-metallic mineral manufacturing.

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In order to prevent cut injuries, laceration and accidents in general, and in order keep workers safe, employers should establish a safety culture that combines, personal protective equipment (PPE) and safety training with enforcement.

For most of our customers in the glass industry PPE is the last line of defence against cut injuries. Safety training is their priority, but most will agree when I say that sometimes even the best of training is not enough.  We human beings simply ‘forget’ or become complacent. A poor night sleep, personal issues that pressure us or other things in life can sometimes lead to human errors.  This is when safety equipment, such as cut resistant clothing plays its roll.

It is somehow like a seat belt in the car.  We may well drive our car every single day.  We have been taught how to drive that car and we even passed a legal test to verify that we are ‘good enough’ to drive it. In fact, we might even have an additional ‘advanced driving skills’ qualifications and no penalty points on our license. But… there may well be the day where we simply are not paying the necessary attention and we crash.  That’s when the seat belt will have a fundamental impact on the outcome of the injuries.  Cut resistant clothing is like that seat belt. It will either prevent injuries or reduce the severity of such.

Personal Protective Equipment | Cut Resistant Clothing

PPE is required for all employees who work on the glass factory or fabrication floor, and cut resistant clothing is part of the ‘PPE’ family.  It is worn to reduce the risk of injury for those who handle or work with flat glass.

Cut resistant clothing is critical, particularly protecting key areas incl all areas harbouring any of the major arteries. These areas include the neck, upper under arm, upper inside leg and wrist. The cutting of any of these main blood vessels would lead to rapid blood loss, subsequent shock and potentially fatalities.

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Most companies within the glass industry have a minimum PPE requirement for all workers in a factory.  They will most likely also have specific PPE requirements for workers in specific jobs, based on an established risk assessment.

For those physically handling raw glass, hand and wrist protection is usually a standard minimum. It is recommended that as the size of the glass and handling of it increases, protection to additional areas of the body must also increase.

Please read the rather informative article of Robert Kaiser, CEO of PPSS Group: “Cut Resistant Clothing In The Glass Industry

Safety Training

Effective safety training must begin on day one of any employment and such training must never stop.  It must be ongoing or frequently.  It must always be in the forefront of all worker’s mind.

Management must also make it for all workers to report the unsafe behaviour of co-workers.  They must also thoroughly investigate all accidents or injuries when they occur, just as they should track and examine near-misses, to establish any behaviour patterns of an individual or that of the entire group.

Ensuring worker safety in the glass industry, production or fabrication environment must mean a proper culture of safety must be established. Safety policies need to be implemented, but also enforced consistently. Workers must be hold accountable if implemented policies are not being followed or indeed, if cut resistant clothing is not being worn, despite the fact the wearing of such has been made compulsory.

Discipline and personal accountability for the choices and actions taken by workers are not optional or subject to how one feels on a given day. This conduct will resonate with employees if you have a disciplined and controlled approach to safety and workers are accountable for their actions.