Fire-Dex Blog

Structural Fire Gloves vs. Technical Rescue Gloves: Understanding the Differences

The role of the fire department has expanded significantly over the years. While firefighting and property protection remain a crucial part of their responsibilities, many fire departments now provide a much wider range of emergency services, including technical rescue services. 

Firefighting gloves must all provide good fit, dexterity, and protection to handle a variety of calls. Choosing the right gloves for the job can be a daunting task with the overwhelming number of options available. However, it is important to understand that each type of glove serves a specific purpose and should only be used in the appropriate situation. 

Learn the key differences between structural firefighting gloves and technical rescue (or extrication) gloves and when to use them during rescue operations. 

Structural Gloves 

Technical Rescue Gloves 

Purpose: Structural firefighting  Purpose: Extrication & technical rescue 
Certification: NFPA 1971 Certification: NFPA 1951 
When to Wear: 10% of your calls When to Wear: 90% of your calls 


  • Thermal lining that extends down the fingers and provides 4x the NFPA requirement for heat protection
  • Three-dimensional design for a natural fit 
  • Seamless fingertips and naturally bent fingers  to reduce hand fatigue & increase dexterity 


  • Tested for ANSI cut, abrasion, & puncture resistance by scoring A8 for cut, Level 5 for abrasion, and Level 4 for puncture
  • 360 degree thumb for added flexibility 
  • Seamless fingertips and naturally bent fingers  to reduce hand fatigue & increase dexterity 




Dex-Rescue-Glove_2_OverlapFeather_Knuckles_IMG_1441 (1)


Different Calls, Different Needs 

Structural firefighting gloves are designed specifically for use in fighting fires of residential and commercial structures. Like turnout gear, structural gloves are designed with an outer shell, thermal liner, and moisture barrier to offer superior protection against high heat conditions and liquids. These gloves should never be used for any other purpose as they are not made to withstand the rigors of technical rescue or extrication. 

On the other hand, technical rescue gloves are typically used in situations where someone needs to be extracted from something. They are used in a variety of non-fire calls, including:

  • Extrication
  • Search & rescue
  • Car accidents 
  • EMS
  • Civilian assistance 
  • Collapsed buildings 
These gloves should never be used during structural fires, as they do not offer the same level of thermal protection as structural firefighting gloves.  

It's essential to understand the differences between structural firefighting gloves and technical rescue gloves and when to use them. By using the appropriate gloves for the job, you can ensure the safety of yourself and others. Whether you need a glove for interior attacks or technical rescue missions – we have you covered! 


Categorized: Dex-Pro Gloves, Firefighter Health and Safety, Dex-Rescue Gloves


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