Personal protective equipment (PPE) manufacturers are designing and producing a wide selection of gloves for firefighters aimed at the type of job the firefighters are performing, such as fighting a structural fire, performing a vehicle extrication, technical rescue work, wildland firefighting, or other specialty tasks.
Liberty Malenich, Lion’s product marketing manager for helmets, boots, gloves, and hoods, says Lion makes the PRIMUS® structural firefighting glove that has a dynamic three-dimensional design that is made by pieced construction for less bulk, better flexibility and dexterity, and easier donning and doffing. “The 3D design provides maximum dexterity and comfort with good fingertip control, flexibility, and grip,” Malenich points out. “The heat-resistant outer shell provides protection against thermal assaults, cuts, and sharp objects, and the Gore® CROSSTECH® insert and Kovenex® lining give lightweight, flexible, and comfortable liquid and thermal protection. The sewn-in liner won’t pull out when doffing, and the glove’s innovative knuckle pad on the back of the hand increases thermal and impact protection in high-heat and high-abrasion areas.”
1 Lion makes the PRIMUS® structural firefighting glove in a dynamic 3D design. (Photo courtesy of Lion.)
Karen Lehtonen, Lion’s vice president of innovation and product development, says that Lion will launch a new structural firefighting glove in the first quarter of this year. “It will be a 3D structural glove, super comfortable, with excellent protection, and will meet National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1971, Standard on Protective Ensembles for Structural Fire Fighting and Proximity Fire Fighting,” Lehtonen says. “It will include a moisture barrier made by Gore, as do our other structural gloves.”
Malenich adds that Lion also makes the Commander™ ACE and Defender™ structural firefighting gloves, as well as the Xtreme™, a 3D design glove that is highly cut-resistant and used for extrication and technical rescue; the Bravo™ EMS glove; and the Mechflex Xtreme station work glove.
HONEYWELL FIRST RESPONDER PRODUCTS
Deana Stankowski, senior product marketing manager for Honeywell First Responder Products, says Honeywell’s top selling glove, the Super Glove™, when made with the wristlet design, meets four NFPA standards: NFPA 1971, NFPA 1999, Standard on Protective Clothing and Ensembles for Emergency Medical Operations; NFPA 1951, Standard on Protective Ensembles for Technical Rescue Incidents; and NFPA 1992, Standard on Liquid Splash-Protective Ensembles and Clothing for Hazardous Materials Emergencies.
2 The Super Glove™ structural firefighting glove made by Honeywell First Responder Products uses kangaroo leather on the back and digiroo leather on the palm and fingers. (Photo courtesy of Honeywell First Responder Products.)
“The Super Glove is made with kangaroo leather on the back and digiroo leather on the palm and fingers,” Stankowski says. “It has 3D hand-shaped styling, bubble-flex finger and knuckle construction with dead-air spacer ridges to allow natural unencumbered hand flexing, Air Spacer™ thermal architecture that traps air for thermal protection without adding bulk, a CROSSTECH moisture barrier, and a DuPont™ Kevlar®/Nomex® thermal liner.”
Stankowski adds that the Super Glove structural version using the gauntlet design meets only NFPA 1971, as does Honeywell’s Fire Mate™ structural firefighting glove, which is made with an elk leather back and a digiroo palm.
Todd Herring, director of marketing for Fire-Dex, says Fire-Dex makes the Dex-Pro™ glove in a 3D design built with three layers, just like firefighter turnout gear. “The Dex-Pro is made with three-ounce cowhide leather for outer protection, a military-grade DuPont Nomex thermal liner, and a Porelle® FR moisture barrier, which allows the gloves to meet NFPA 1971,” Herring says. “Dexterity is what sets the Dex-Pro apart, in addition to its ruggedness and durability. The 3D finger design has the fingers prebent so the firefighter isn’t working against the material to bend his fingers, there are no seams on the fingertips, and the thumb is a keyhole design to give better maneuverability.”
3 Fire-Dex makes the Dex-Pro structural firefighting glove in a 3D design with fingers prebent for greater flexibility. (Photo courtesy of Fire-Dex.)
Herring points out that last month Fire-Dex launched the Dex-Pro USA glove that’s made in its Georgia manufacturing facility and that Fire-Dex expects to launch technical rescue and extrication glove models later this year.
Doug Dafler, director of sales for Veridian, notes that Veridian makes four models of structural firefighting gloves. “The Fire Knight is a 3D design with separate, curved, form-fitting forchettes for true finger dexterity and a PBI and DuPont Kevlar shell for strength, durability, and comfort,” Dafler says. “It has a CROSSTECH moisture barrier, a cowhide suede leather palm that’s abrasion- and heat-resistant, a grab bar for quick and effortless donning, and comes in both gauntlet and wristlet styles.”
4 In addition to its line of structural firefighting gloves, Veridian also makes a wildland firefighting glove with a black leather palm, gold leather back, and double-layer knit Kevlar wristlet. (Photo courtesy of Veridian.)
Dafler adds that Veridian also makes the Fire Armor 3D structural firefighting glove “with a one-piece back shell made of ultra-flexible 100% FR Para Aramid knit fleece, a Nomex/Kevlar thermal liner, and Modacrylic on the palm for superior comfort and dexterity.” In addition, Veridian also offers the Fire Hog and Fire Pro II structural firefighting gloves, as well as a Wildland Firefighting glove with a black leather palm, gold leather back, and double-layer knit Kevlar wristlet.
Claude Barbeau, general manager of INNOTEX, says his company makes four models of structural firefighting gloves, with its top of the line being the INNOTEX885B™ and INNOTEX885S™ versions. The two are identical except for color, Barbeau says, and are made from 100% kangaroo leather that makes them highly flexible and very resistant to tearing and punctures. “Because of their CROSSTECH inserts, the gloves give good resistance to chemicals, contaminants, and bloodborne pathogens,” he notes.
The other two models of structural gloves INNOTEX makes are the INNOTEX885™ 2D gloves, made with kangaroo leather on the palm and cowhide on the back, and the INNOTEX815™ 2D gloves.
Eric Slivovsky, public safety sales manager for HexArmor, says HexArmor makes the FireArmor® structural firefighting glove out of cowhide suede leather with a Kevlar liner on the back of the hand to provide added cut resistance. “The glove, which meets NFPA 1971, has a reinforced thumb saddle and palm for increased durability and abrasion resistance and an extended gauntlet cuff for added protection against debris,” Slivovsky says. “FireArmor uses a H2X+™ FR moisture barrier and a 100 percent Nomex knit inner liner for 360-degree heat resistance.”
HexArmor makes four models of EXT Rescue® gloves, Slivovsky says, with the 4012 version being the most popular. “The 4012 has a SuperFabric® palm that provides some of the highest cut protection available in the industry,” he points out. “A back-of-hand impact protection system uses an advanced design to dissipate forceful blows over a large area, and the durable TP-X® palm with reinforced stitching pattern provides the ultimate dexterity and grip in wet and dry applications. The glove has a reinforced index finger and thumb crotch for increased longevity and an elastic [hook-and-loop] wrist closure for a secure fit and maximum comfort.”
Jason Traynor, general manager of global respiratory protection and fire helmets for MSA, says MSA is working with a manufacturer “to develop a new, innovative structural firefighting glove that meets NFPA 1971. We think there’s an opportunity for MSA to address the issues of cleaning leather gloves and eliminating shrinking. We are looking at cleanability and durability of the fit over time after cleaning and expect to announce a development some time this year.”
ALAN M. PETRILLO is a Tucson, Arizona-based journalist, the author of three novels and five nonfiction books, and a member of the Fire Apparatus & Emergency Equipment Editorial Advisory Board. He served 22 years with the Verdoy (NY) Fire Department, including in the position of chief.