EN388 Mechanical Handling - New Tests for 2016


The new revised European Standard EN 388:2016 is a test requirement for safety gloves that require protection against abrasion, cut, puncture, tearing and impact.

1. Abrasion

The first number in the EN 388 rating is for resistance to abrasion, a test is carried out on a glove material using sandpaper under pressure. The protection level is on a scale of 1 to 4 the test measures for holes and tears in the glove material. The higher the number is, the better the resistance to abrasion.

2. Cut Resistance Coup Test

The second number in the EN 388 rating is for resistance to cut. A test is measured by passing a knife over the material until it cuts through.
If the material dulls the knife during the test the cut test ISO 13997(TDM test) shall be performed instead.

3. Tear Strength

The third number in the EN 388 rating is a test run on the glove material to test the force required to puncture the material with a tip. The protection level is indicated by a number between 1 and 4, where 4 indicates the strongest material.

4. Puncture Resistance

The forth number in the EN 388 rating test is for the puncture of the glove material. This test uses a rounded point which is pushed through the material at a fixed speed and the force that is penetrated through the material is measured.
The protection level is indicated by a number between 1 and 4, 4 being the highest protection.

5. Cut resistance, TDM test ISO 13997

If the knife gets dull during the coup test, this test shall be performed instead. The result is given by a letter, A to F, where F indicates the highest level of protection. If any of these letters is given, this method determines the protection level instead of the coup test.

6. Impact protection

If the glove has an impact protection, this information is given by the letter P as the 6th and last sign. If no P sign, no impact protection is claimed.
An alternative cut test recommended for cut protection gloves. Shall be used in EN388:2016 for cut protection gloves where the cut material dulls the cutting knife during testing. A knife cuts with constant speed but increasing force until breakthrough of the cut protection material. Level of protection is given in Newton, the force needed for cut through at 20mm cut length.

Gloves in our range which are tested to the new standard: