Arco highlights key changes in its Expert Guide: A summary of the update to the standard EN 388 Protective Gloves Against Mechanical Risks.
The most significant changes to the Standard relate to cut protection: if during the original ‘coupe’ test method the blade blunts, then an additional EN ISO test method is required.
Illustrated in the Expert Guide, Arco overviews the key changes to the Standard:
Safety experts at Arco believe that the new cut test method is more appropriate for high risk cut environments, however, they consider that the changes in the new European standard could be both misleading and confusing for customers. Arco suggests if blunting occurs within the first (coupe) method and the glove has to undergo the additional ISO assessment, the original coupe test should be void and the glove marked with an X in place of the coupe rating.
In this instance the glove should only show the EN ISO 13997:1999 code letter rating. This is to remove the end user needing to read the instructions to see which rating is representative of the glove’s performance as these are not readily available at point of sale. This issue was recognized by the BSI standards committee and an additional annex was added to the British Standard which reflects this recommendation.
Neil Hewitt, Divisional Director of Quality and Technical Standards, says: “The UK annex to the standard will make end user product selection much easier as it will remove confusion and we welcome this as ultimately this will be reflected in worker safety.”
The Expert Guide is available online for Arco customers to download.