Outfitting Composites Manufacturing Workers with PPE

Employers play a major role in keeping workers safe by properly outfitting and training employees for personal protective equipment (PPE) use and maintenance. PPE is necessary to keep workers from encountering hazardous chemicals and particles.

PPE is commonly used in composites manufacturing industries including infrastructure, aerospace, transportation, marine, and construction. According to OSHA, 650,000 different chemicals are present in more than 3 million American workplaces, resulting in more than 32 million workers—or more than 20% of the U.S. workforce—experiencing some exposure to chemical products in the workplace. According to the CDC, occupational skin disease is among the most frequently reported occupational illnesses.

Composites One offers a full line of process consumables to complement every composite manufacturing process. This includes PPE clothing, accessories, and equipment, designed to protect workers from hazards and injury. Suppliers including Dupont, 3M, and Ansell provide products such as protective gloves, clothing, respirators, hearing protection, eye protection, and fall protection. Our valued suppliers offer customers the added benefits of expert support, cost savings, and OSHA compliance for worker safety.

Hand protection in composites manufacturing

When it comes to hand protection, there are important factors to consider when dealing with chemical resistance:

  • Permeation – when the chemical makes its way through the glove at a microscopic level.
  • Degradation – when the chemical begins breaking through the physical characteristics of the glove, making gloves brittle, or leaving fine cracks.
  • Penetration – when degradation has occurred, and the chemical works through small breaks in the glove.

Different gloves can react differently to different chemicals, so making sure workers have the right glove for the chemical they are working with is important. Composites One supports customers by helping to evaluate workplace hazards to select the right product for specific applications. We consider which chemicals are in use, the ability of the glove material to protect against the chemical, and the properties of the glove, including thickness and disposability. 

The risks of inadequately using PPE in the workplace threaten both employers and employees, with effects ranging from OSHA fines and disability claims for businesses to reduced earnings, medical bills, loss of a trade, or major injury for workers.

Workplace safety is critical in the composites and high-performance materials manufacturing industries. Composites One helps customers involved in composites manufacturing processes to protect workers and maintain regulatory compliance. We are committed to safety by helping customers determine the right PPE for their applications and applying it in an employee setting for proper use, care, and maintenance.

Learn more about the importance of PPE in composites manufacturing.