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Swatch Test Results of Commercial Chemical Protective Gloves to Challenge by Chemical Warfare Agents: Summary Report

NCJ Number
Robert S. Lindsay
Date Published
97 pages
This study presented the results of 11 commercially available and commonly used chemical protective gloves to determine their ability to resist vapor permeation from liquid contamination by chemical agents Sarin (GB) and Mustard (HD).
In 1996, the Department of Defense created the Domestic Preparedness Program. One of the goals of the program was to enhance Federal, State, and local emergency and hazardous material response to nuclear, biological, and chemical (NBC) terrorism incidents. Emergency personnel and HAZMAT personnel responding to an incident will use personal protective equipment (PPE) to protect them from exposure to chemical and biological agents. In some instances, chemical protective gloves may be required to enter a contaminated or potentially contaminated area. This study examined swatches from 11 commercially available protective gloves to assess their ability to resist liquid droplets of Sarin (GB) and Mustard (HD) using modifications of the static diffusion procedure. The gloves were tested in new, as-received condition. From this data, the researchers calculated a cumulative mass of each agent that permeated each of the swatches. The results for all the swatches were used to establish an average cumulative mass for each glove. A breakthrough time was then calculated for each glove/agent combination for the purposes of a comparison. Thus, the researchers calculated the estimated time it would take to permeate a glove with sufficient agent to cause physiological effects in people wearing the glove. The objectives of the study and the testing and data analysis were presented. Appendices included: A) Gloves Chosen for Testing; B) Modified Static Diffusion Test Procedure; C) Best Butyl; D) Ansell Edmont Thermaprene; E) Bayside Latex; F) Safety Zone; G) Mapa Neoprene; H) Ansell Edmont TNT Nitrile; I) Ansell Edmont PVA; J) Hahn Fat PVC; K) Safety 4H; L) Ansell Edmont Sol-Vex; M) Best Viton; N) Overall test results.