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EN388 - Protective Gloves for Mechanical Risks.

work gloves tested to en388

All Safety gloves intended to protect against mechanical risks are rated using an internationally recognised standard called EN388. This includes five separate tests that score the glove for its protective properties.

Decoding EN388 Scores

Work gloves tested to EN388 display a 5-digit pictogram that looks like this. It will always have the shield and hammer icon with a series of letters and numbers beneath denoting the score of that specific glove.

Reading from left to right, this is what each digit represents:

EN388:2016
EN388 Mechanical Risks
A B C D E

Digit A (Abrasion Test)

Gloves are tested for their ability to withstand abrasion. They are rated numerically from 0 to 4, zero being the lowest level of resistance and four being the highest.

Digit B (Coup/Cut Test)

The fabric of the glove is placed under a rotating blade and scored on the number of rotation cycles it can tolerate. A numeric score of 0 to 5 is allocated, zero being the lowest tolerance and 5 being the highest.

Digit C (Tear Test)

The glove is rated numerically by the amount of force required to tear the fabric. Zero being the lowest force and four being the highest.

Digit D (Puncture Test)

A numeric score is calculated based on the amount of pressure required to puncture the fabric of the glove. Zero being the lowest level of resistance and four being the highest.

Digit E – (TDM/Cut Test)

This tests the glove for it’s ability to withstand a blade applied in a linear motion. Results are represented alphabetically with ‘A’ being the lowest level of resistance and ‘F’ being the highest.

What does ‘X’ mean?

If the safety glove has not undergone any one of the five individual tests, an ‘X’ will appear in the sequence. This is to clearly indicate the absence of a score. This is most commonly seen when the Coup Test (digit 2 in the sequence) is omitted as the glove has been elevated to the more rigorous TDM test (digit 5). There are other less frequently occurring reasons why elements parts of the test may not be carried out.

Find out more about EN388 on our EN Standards page.

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