Improving apprentice safety - glove trial slashes injuries
Melbourne, May 7, 2013 - Occupational health, safety and environment coordinator, Kiri Spiridopoulos, looks after the safety of 140 plumbers at CDC Plumbing and Drainage, which is currently working on a multi-unit residential development, Upper West Side Apartments, in Melbourne’s CBD.
Kiri’s team includes several apprentices employed by the Victorian Master Plumbers and Mechanical Services Association (MPMSAA) through its Group Training Scheme. As part of a recent PPE trial, Master Plumbers’ OHS officer, Rod Tresidder, made it mandatory for all the scheme’s apprentices to wear Ansell PowerFlex® 80-813 safety gloves on the job.
“Having monitored our plumbing injury statistics over a period of six years, we know that 33 three percent of all the injuries experienced by our members are hand injuries,” explained Rod. “Of these, 78 percent are cuts and, of those, a massive 50 percent are also lost time injuries”, he added.
After making this striking discovery, Master Plumbers invited Ansell to help them implement a hand-protection program targeting apprentices. “As a result of this initiative we reduced apprentice hand injuries by 80 percent”, said Rod.
Daniel Dew is a fourth-year apprentice with Master Plumbers who is currently being hosted by CDC Plumbing for the Upper West Side Apartments project. “Our work involves hazardous tasks like removing metal studs, jack hammering, and handling adhesives and other harmful compounds such as glue solvents and silicon”, he explained.
“The Ansell PowerFlex gloves I received during induction provide good protection across a range of tasks so I don’t need to keep putting them on and taking them off”, he said. “They’re also strong enough to prevent cuts when I handle sharp steel edges”.
Ansell’s PowerFlex 80-813 gloves are among the first to combine a high level of cut protection and flame resistance in one design. The yarn consists of a core glass fibre that provides flame resistance and cut resistance at the highest levels (Level 4 for flame resistance and Level 5 for cut resistance).
“They are also incredibly comfortable. They provide a snug fit while at the same time allowing my hands to breathe so they don’t get too hot,” added Daniel. Ansell says the gloves’ ergonomic fit is due to a combination of patented technology and a soft foam coating that offers exceptional grip, decreasing slippage and hand tension when it comes to wet and oily jobs or handling small materials, like nuts and bolts.
According to Daniel, the gloves can last for several months, depending on the duties being undertaken. “They are a lot stronger than many other gloves I have tried and their durability is impressive”, he said.
“Ever since Master Plumbers made it mandatory for apprentices to wear Ansell PowerFlex 80-813 gloves, we have observed a substantial reduction in hand lacerations,” enthused CDC Plumbing’s Kiri Spiridopoulos. “Our company has a compulsory glove-wear policy and I apply that vigorously”, he said. “These gloves have made my job easier because apprentices actually like wearing them,” he added.
“By making sure staff wear the right gloves, we have not only improved productivity and efficiency but, more importantly, reduced injury rates among apprentices”, said Rod.
“I am not only delighted to have dramatically reduced hand injuries, I am also proud that Master Plumbers has saved members around $118,000 in annual injury management expenses just by ensuring apprentices wear their Ansell gloves,” he concluded.
Master Plumbers and Ansell are already discussing another glove trial, this time using ActivArmr® 97-005 Plumbers Gloves. Ansell says these gloves are high in comfort, dexterity and cut protection, having been designed to provide plumbers with outstanding grip when handling slippery, warm or hot pipes and other plumbing materials.
New generation of ‘safety-savvy’ plumbers
On the issue of safety compliance among younger workers specifically, Rod explains, “Apprentices these days are smart. They don’t want to damage their hands; they want to look well-groomed outside work and they are more accustomed to wearing gloves because it’s always been that way”.
“Meanwhile, some older plumbers still feel a stigma associated with protecting one’s hands. Others tried working with safety gloves in the past, unsuccessfully, and are reluctant to wear them now, despite dramatic improvements in design and technology. Those workers are more likely to take unnecessary risks or make it hard for others to comply”.
The interaction between older and younger plumbers is generally positive, though. “Leading PPE firms like Ansell are constantly developing new technologies to improve on the already high level of comfort, dexterity, tactility and grip provided by the new generation of safety gloves”, said Rod. And with safe work practices de rigueur for most young plumbers, compliance will likely spread throughout the industry as apprentices mature into senior roles.
Safety Is Our First Consideration at G&S Engineering Services
Queensland, Australia, November 2015 –G&S Engineering Services Pty Ltd provides a diverse range of asset management services that span manufacture, construction and maintenancein the mining resources, energy and infrastructure industries.
Tough approach pays safety dividend for glass fabricator.
In an industry where people historically were not required to wear gloves, Chevron discovered the introduction of a mandatory glove policy represented a challenge. There existed an attitude of “nothing has happened to me, so why do I have to wear gloves?
Veteran carpenter and joiner Bruce Tubnor understands the importance of hand safety. After 50 years in the building trade, he recalls how hard it was to do simple jobs wearing traditional leather riggers gloves, like picking up a nail for instance. Hear what Bruce has to say about Ansell’s latest high-tech gloves and learn why, after a long search, he chose the HyFlex® 11-840.
Backwell IXL is one of Australia’s oldest manufacturing success stories. The company has been providing metal stamping, metal finishing, roll forming and assembly services to the automotive industry for more than 150 years. For Daryl Perrett, Operations Leader in the pressings, coatings and roll mills area, hand safety is critical.
Ansell HyFlex gloves help stop a pain in the glass at AGC
AGC Flat Glass Czech, manufactuer of quality glass providing protection from heat, cold, noise, fire, intruders and accidents, conducted an in-depth modernisation program on its production equipment.
TouchNTuff® the safety solution at SFF Group
Sweden’s SKF Group, with 100 production units worldwide across three divisions – Industry, Automotive and Services - is a leading provider of joints, mechatronics and lubrication systems in the bearings market.
Ansell Guardian transporting zero hand injuries
An American transport manufacturer, alarmed at the frequency of hand injuries, called in Ansell Guardian for an assessment.
Guardian, a comprehensive work safety savings and profitability improvement program, was implemented at the transport company’s two sites in different US states.
Work injuries plummet more than 80 per cent
At the company’s request, Ansell conducts its Guardian assessments at pilot sites, with manufacturing processes identical at all locations.
Ansell Guardian is a comprehensive cost savings and profitability improvement process that analyses seven distinct cost drivers which impact on a company's day-to-day operations. The goal is to create solutions consolidated into one package and applied company-wide.