21 October 2021

A guide to winter hand safety

We have put together a winter hand safety guide. Find out everything you need to know in one place, as winter approaches we have you covered.

SOLVING YOUR WINTER PAINS

At Traffi we’re on a mission to reduce hand injuries. As we move into the final months of the year, being prepared in advance of the colder period is vital, especially as injuries often occur in the acclimatisation period. 

1. Are your winter gloves restrictive?

2. Do your winter gloves lack grip?

3. Do your hands get wet and cold in the winter?

4. Are you looking for more sustainable alternatives to your current winter gloves?

We have the solution to your (chillier) problems, with our carefully selected winter glove range.

THE BIG 3 YOU WANT TO AVOID THIS WINTER

Frostbite

Signs: During the early stage of frostbite, you’ll experience pins and needles, throbbing or aching in the affected area. Your skin will become cold, numb and white, and you may feel a tingling sensation. This stage of frostbite is known as frostnip. After these early signs of frostbite, prolonged exposure to cold temperatures will cause more tissue damage. The affected area will feel hard and frozen. When you’re out of the cold and the tissue has thawed out, the skin will turn red and blister, which can be painful. There may also be swelling and itching. If exposure to the cold continues, frostbite gets increasingly severe. The skin becomes white, blue or blotchy, and the tissue underneath feels hard and cold to touch. 

Treatment: Treating frostbite will need to be carried out by a doctor and may include rewarming, protecting the injury from infection and removing the damaged tissue. 

Chilblains

Signs: Chilblains are small, very itchy swellings on the skin. They most often affect your extremities, such as your fingers, and are caused by bad circulation in the skin due to exposure to cold, damp conditions. 

Treatment: Rewarm the skin slowly, without applying direct heat or rubbing the skin. Apply a corticosteroid cream to ease the itching and clean skin with an antiseptic to reduce the risk of infection. Don’t scratch the affected area as this could leave scarring! 

Hypothermia

Signs: This happens when you have an abnormally low body temperature below 35C (your normal body temperature is 36.5–37.5 C). The symptoms will begin with shivering and progress to confusion, slurred speech and a slowing heart and respiratory rate. 

Treatment: Seek immediate medical attention. While waiting for assistance to arrive, take the following actions: 

Gently move the person out of the cold to a warm, dry location.

Remove any wet clothing and cover in blankets, leaving only the face exposed.

Monitor breathing and supply them with warm beverages if they’re conscious and able to swallow.

WHAT TO CONSIDER  WHEN CHOOSING YOUR  WINTER SAFETY GLOVES

Breathability

Even in sub-zero temperatures we perspire. When the sweat evaporates off our hands it takes heat away from our body to cool down. Breathable gloves allow the sweat to escape the glove, preventing moisture from accumulating. 

Waterproof

Heat loss is far higher when the insulation inside the glove is wet or damp. Waterproof gloves protect the insulation, preventing water from penetrating from the outside. Keeping your hands dry and warm for much longer. 

Insulation

When working in cold environments, body heat needs to be retained. Winter hand protection should have two layers; the outer layer for cut protection, and the inner insulating layer. Fingertips are one of the first places to lose heat, so make sure they’re well insulated. Poor quality safety gloves will compromise the protection of the fingertips. A glove with a built-in insulating layer, or a separate thermal liner, will reduce this problem.

Dexterity

If workers don’t have enough dexterity to carry out their tasks, they may be forced to remove their gloves, leaving them unprotected to the weather and other risks involved. Vibrations from machinery can lead to white finger, which is exacerbated in cold & wet conditions. Keeping hands warm by choosing a dexterous insulated glove that allows good unrestricted movement of the fingers, can help alleviate the risk.

WHY CHOOSE TRAFFI 

Sustainability & Innovation 

We listen to our customers pain points and invest in research and development to produce innovative glove designs and materials, that offer unrivalled protection, comfort and dexterity. We’re leading the way in sustainability within the safety glove industry and as part of our journey, we have: 

Become certified carbon neutral as a company

Introduced the world’s first carbon neutral safety glove range (LXT)

Reduced our plastic packaging

Introduced a sustainable solution to disposable gloves (TD02)

By working with us, we can help you to achieve some of your sustainability goals.

Support 

We’re here to help promote buy-in to your hand protection programme. We ensure that we fully understand your needs. We offer glove audits, trials, product training, toolbox talks, free samples, glove posters, and other bespoke collateral, to help make glove selection and compliance easier. We also provide ongoing support, throughout your whole journey with us.

VIEW THE GUIDE TO WINTER HAND SAFETY