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

NCJ Number
Robert S. Lindsay
Date Published
14 pages
This executive summary presented the results from 11 commercially available glove designs to determine their ability to protect people in a chemical warfare (CW) agent environment.
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. In some cases, chemical protective gloves may be needed to enter a contaminated environment. Limited data was available regarding the effectiveness of commercially available and commonly used gloves as protection against chemical warfare (CW) agents. The U.S. Army Soldier Biological Command (SBCCOM) created a program to test some of the glove designs, which used CW agents and test procedures developed for assessment of military-issue CW protective equipment. A detailed technical report was produced for each glove design tested, and a summary report was prepared that gave the essential results for all the gloves in a single document. Due to the fact that those were lengthy and technical, this report was produced. This report gave an overview of the results of the evaluation and was intended for Federal, State and local emergency HAZMAT personnel as a way of evaluating current work rules concerning specific chemical gloves currently in inventory and as an aid in future procurement of suitable chemical protective gloves. The gloves were tested in new, as received condition. The test data showed that the chemical protective glove designs tested could protect wearers from liquid CW agents. Breakthrough times should not be interpreted as the time that a glove can safely be worn, either for chemical agents Mustard (HD) or Sarin (GB). Breakthrough times should only be used to compare glove materials. Included a table for swatch test results for the 11 gloves. 1 Table