OSHA-Approved “Baseball Mitt” Safety Gloves Slow Productivity, Compliance Expert Says

As EVs roll into reconditioning, techs cautioned to pick up the right safety gloves before turning a wrench on high-voltage vehicles

Crystal Lake, IL February 15, 2016 Automotive Compliance Consultants’ president and CEO Terry Dortch cautioned service and detail technicians to choose the right safety gloves to wear when working on high-voltage hybrids and EVs.

With more than 3.5 million hybrid and 345,000 pure electric vehicles sold to date, dealerships are seeing an increasing flow of pre-owned alternative fuel vehicles through their reconditioning and mechanical services.

To protect individuals working on these high-voltage systems, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has determined that technicians must wear OSHA Class 0 gloves when working on these vehicles.

Wearing these gloves, due to their cumbersome design, however, can slow down techs’ productivity.

“Class 0 gloves are cumbersome to wear and slow down techs’ work,” said Terry Dortch, president of Automotive Compliance Consultants. “This bulky glove makes technicians feel like they’re wearing a baseball mitt, so wearing them can reduce their tactile sensitivity they need in their hands when working on high-voltage EV and hybrid vehicles.”

Dortch said an alternative available from Automotive Compliance Consultants enables techs to retain greater feel and flexibility. These gloves are rated to 5,000 volts, not 1,000 volts as are Class O gloves. This alternative glove is also approved by the American National Standards Institute, from which OSHA writes its standards.

Dortch said his company’s safety glove program features an extra safety advantage—it helps techs avoid accidentally putting on gloves that might have holes, wear spots or other wear imperfections that can lead to electrical shock.

Whatever glove choice the dealership opts for, Dortch reminds service managers that any safety gloves used for EV and hybrid vehicle maintenance must be off-site safety tested every six months. Techs must also follow all OEM service and repair procedures. Techs must also remain alert to the unique dangers present when working in EV and hybrid environments.

Automotive Compliance Consultants specializes in dealership compliance, providing in-dealership consultations and analysis, compliance audits, and training, and offers solutions for all compliance needs. For more information, contact Terry Dortch at terry_dortch@compliantnow.com or visit www.compliantnow.com.

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Jim Leman, jim@lemanpublicrelations.com, 847-840-0784

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