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Saturday 17th November 2018 12:05PM GMT

Head, Hand, Ear & Knee Safety Standards

Head Protective Standards

EN 397 : European Standard EN 397 specifies the physical and performance requirements for industrial safety helmets. Safety helmets are primarily designed to protect the wearer against falling objects and consequential brain injury and/ or skull fracture. They offer maximum head protection.

EN 812 : European Standard EN 812 specifies the quality requirements for bump caps. Bump caps are intended to protect your workforce against minor bumps to the head, typically from low ceilings or hanging items in the workplace. Whilst they provide protection against small impacts and minor sharp objects, they are not a substitute for safety helmets since they do not offer adequate protection against falling objects and heavier impacts.

Shock Absorption/Impact Resistance
EN 397 – Safety Helmets
EN 812 – Bump Caps
Drop height
1 metre
0.25 metre
Maximum force allowed
15 kilonewtons
5 kilonewtons
Energy transmitted during test
49 joules
12 joules
Striker face and weight 50mm radius hemispherical, 5kg
100mm diameter flat, 5kg

Penetration Resistance
EN 397 – Safety Helmets
EN 812 – Bump Caps
Drop height
1 metre
0.5 metre
Energy transmitted during test
29 joules
2.5 joules
Striker mass 3kg

Glove Protective Standards

Protective gloves are often an integral part of the required personal protection kitbox. Gloves can offer a far reaching level of hazard protection from thermal, chemical and impact to bio-hazard and general household liquids.

Many gloves are designed to protect against one specific type of hazard. Firefighters gloves are multi hazard resistant including additional protection against upper hand impact and the inclusion of high visibility strips. Add to this the watertight anti-slip capacity and the firefighters gloves offer protection against almost any hazard.

EN 388: Is the classification for gloves designed to protect the hands against mechanical risks. The standard applies to all kinds of protective gloves giving protection from mechanical risks, in respect of physical problems caused by abrasion, blade cut, puncture or tearing. This standard also covers risk of electrostatic discharge.
A - Abrasion resistance. 0 - 4.
B - Blade/cut resistance. 0 - 5.
C - Tear resistance. 0 - 4.
D - Puncture resistance. 0 - 4.

EN 407: This standard applies to gloves that protect the hands against heat and/or fire.
A - Burning behaviour. 0 - 4.
B - Contact heat. 0 - 4.
C - Convective heat. 0 - 4.
D - Radiant heat. 0 - 4.
E - Resistance to small splashes of molten metal. 0 - 4.
F - Resistance to large splashes of molten metal. 0 - 4.

EN 420: This standard defines the general requirements for protective gloves in terms of construction, fitness of purpose, safety, etc. The gloves themselves should not impose a risk or cause injury, The pH of the gloves should be as close as possible to neutral. Leather gloves should have a pH value between 3.5 – 9.5.

EN 421: This standard specifies the performance criteria for gloves protecting against ionising raditation and radioactive contamination.

EN 511: This standard applies to gloves that protect the hands against convective & cold conditions.
A - Convective cold. 0 - 4.
B - Contact cold. 0 - 4.
C - Water impermeability. 0 - 1.

EN 659: This standard defines the specifications required for gloves designed to protect fire fighters against heat & flames.

EN 12477: Is the standard for protective gauntlets for welders. This standard describes how the gloves are designed to provide protection for both hand and wrist while welding or similar work, this is a combination from testing EN 388 and EN 407. Welding gloves shall provide resistance to small splashes of molten metal, short exposure to convective heat, to radiant heat and to contact heat. The welding gloves shall give protection from mechanical risks as well.
Type A refer to gloves that shall provide a higher protection against heat.
Type B refer to gloves that provide a lower protection against heat but they are more flexible and pliable.

Hearing Protection Standards

EN 352-1: 2002 - Hearing protectors - Ear muffs
EN 352-2: 2002 - Hearing protectors - Ear plugs
EN 352-3: 2002 & EN 352-4:2001- Hearing protectors - Ear muffs attached to a safety helmet
EN 352-5: 2002 - Hearing protectors – Active noise reduction ear muffs
EN 352-6: 2002 - Hearing protectors - Ear muffs with electrical audio input
EN 352-7: 2002 - Hearing protectors – level dependent ear plugs
EN 352-8: 2008 - Hearing protectors – entertainment audio earmuffs

Knee Protection Standards

EN14404 was published and came into effect in February 2005. It defines knee protection as personal safety equipment (PPE) according to guideline 98/686/EEC.

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