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Gearing Up for Protection Against Chemicals

By Joy LePree |

The CPI requires more innovative and comfortable chemical-resistant clothing, goggles and gloves to protect workers The purpose of chemical protective clothing (CPC) is to shield and protect workers from chemicals. However, explains Sally J. Smart, a Certified Safety Professional and technical safety specialist with Grainger (Lake Forest, Ill.; www.grainger.com), there is no one item or even a single combination of protective equipment and clothing that is capable of protecting chemical workers from all chemicals in all applications. “It’s also important to remember that CPC itself is capable of creating wearer hazards, such as heat stress or psychological stress,” she says. “It gets hot in encapsulated suits and some people don’t like to be encapsulated because they can’t hear, see, move or communicate well.” For this reason, every manufacturer of CPC is working on how to better protect workers while making them more comfortable. “These are key issues in the industry,” notes Smart. “How do we make fabrics and garments lighter and more breathable, yet more chemical resistant? How do we improve vision? How do we improve mobility and dexterity?” As a result, there are many new and improved chemical-resistant…
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