FR PRIMER

If you’re new to the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) market, if your safety standards have changed, or if you’re looking for an FR garment partner, let’s talk.

Many industries, such as Industrial and Oil & Gas, require workers to wear flame resistant (FR) garments. Their teams’ protection depends on these garments day in and day out. According to Bulwark®, an industry-leading FR manufacturer, “for a piece of clothing to be considered flame resistant, the fabric used to make the garment must withstand ignition and/or rapidly self-extinguish in order to protect the wearer from the dangers of flash fire, arc flash, molten metals and other hazards. In the event of a flash fire or arc flash, the FR PPE worn must resist catching fire, melting and continuing to burn after the initial flash to act as a barrier between the wearer and the hazard.”

What to Consider

When it comes to PPE clothing, each industry has numerous, detailed standards for compliance. The type of protection needed for a welder may be entirely different for someone working with chemicals and oil. Knowing which type of FR garments you need can seem overwhelming. To start the discussion, check out this handy list of questions to ask yourself.

You’ll also want to reference American National Standards Institute (ANSI) for specific guidance on protective clothing selection, use, proper care and maintenance of protective clothing based on the type of job you’re performing.

And it doesn’t stop when you determine the type of garments your team needs. Whether it’s a shirt, jacket, pants or coveralls, these garments must be worn properly at all times. Training and reinforcing best practices is imperative. If a worker rolls up the sleeves of a jacket or unbuttons the neck on their coveralls, the protection is compromised and they are at risk for injury. If employees wear non-FR clothing underneath their FR gear, and the top layer has a hole in it or isn’t worn properly, they could potentially be burned. According to Creative Safety Publishing, it is best for workers to wear melt-resistant fabrics against their skin, as these fabrics won’t act as an ignition source.

Innovation

In an effort to provide protection and deliver comfort at the same time, Bulwark’s new iQ Series® technology has changed the game in FR workwear. Bulwark partnered with Milliken®, a leading fabric manufacturer, to develop a smarter, better solution for protective workwear. iQ fabric is comfortable and breathable while still maintaining the highest level of protection necessary. Another breakthrough is in the maintenance. This fabric can handle as many washes as you can throw at it, without sacrificing its protection. Visit these links to see how the science behind the iQ Series is delivering modern style, cutting-edge shirts and coveralls.

When you provide uniforms that feel good and serve a purpose, employees will be more apt to properly wear the garments and perform at their top potential. Ultimately, a happy, comfortable worker is a more productive worker.

Partnerships

Safety is the first requirement for your business to be successful in any capacity, but when you have so much going on, it can be difficult to keep up with FR standards. You need a partner and uniform supplier who understands the specific functions and needs of your company. Luckily, you aren’t going at this alone. AmeriPride’s rental and direct purchase uniform programs are designed specifically to make sure all your employees are wearing the right garments and make safety a shared priority. Your team will be protected, and you’ll be able to focus your attention on higher-level aspects of your business.

For details on all the FR fabrics we offer in work apparel, visit our Flame Resistant Fabric and Specifications breakdown on our website.

To learn more about our rental, lease and direct purchase programs and FR apparel, contact us today!

Sources:

Bulwark (http://bulwark.com/Blog/Post/406)

Creative Safety Publishing (http://www.creativesafetypublishing.com/flame-resistant-clothing/)

American National Standards Institute (https://webstore.ansi.org/safety_standards/protective_clothing.aspx)


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