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The case of inherent and treated fabrics take a back seat when it comes to FR fabric selection. It is the individual characteristics of a fabric that determine their suitability in a particular environment such as their weight, thickness, strength, shrinkage, breathability, comfort and wear life. All of these factors should be considered in the selection of the right FR fabric and not just how the FR protection has been achieved.
Yes, FR fabrics are used not only for protective garments but also for different domestic applications such as curtains, upholstery, kitchen textiles etc.
Many combinations of fibers can be made flame-retardant through chemical treatment. However, some fibers such as wool and silk, are naturally more flame-retardant than other materials like cotton, nylon and linen. Having this said, even if some fibers are less burnable, the same fiber may not be suitable for FR fabric use due to other parameters such as fiber strength, wash ability, melting temperature etc.
International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is an international standard-setting organization headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland.
ISO 11612 is a performance standard for the FR fabrics and specifies the requirements for garments, made from flexible materials, to protect a wearer’s body from heat and flame in a given hazard situation.
The ISO 11612 contains different tests and parameters that in combination is giving insight in which hazards the FR fabric is protecting against.
NFPA 2112, plays a crucial role in addressing industrial flash fire hazards prevalent in sectors such as petrochemicals, oil, and gas. Unlike finished garments, the focus shifts solely to the fabric, with the NFPA 2112 specifying requirements for materials to ensure protection from these specific hazards. Compliance with this standard is comprehensive, encompassing both individual components and the final garment, and necessitates evaluation by a certification body.
An electric arc, or arc discharge, is an electrical breakdown of a gas that produces an ongoing electrical discharge. The current travel through a normally nonconductive medium such as air, and produces a plasma; the plasma may produce visible light.
It can look like a spark or a huge lightning depending on the intensity (power) of the electrical discharge. An electrical arc can generate and radiate a lot of energy/heat that can injure people within a certain distance from the arc (depending on the energy of the arc).
NFPA 70E is a safety standard developed by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) that outlines guidelines and best practices for electrical safety in the workplace. The standard is designed to protect workers from electrical hazards that can cause injury or even death.
To qualify for the NFPA 70E the garment manufacturer needs to use fabric that qualifies; tested and certified to ASTM F1506 – where the significant testing is the ASTM F1959F Arc rating.
The lifetime of the FR properties is first of all a result of the producer’s capabilities as well as which chemistry that is being used in production. When garments are later washed after use, it is important that the washing instruction is being followed in order to retain the FR properties.
One of the requirements for materials that is being tested according to the NFPA 2112 standard is that it should meet the test standard after 100 washing cycles. This is normally well above the lifetime of a regular garment. The FR properties in most of Daletec fabrics are proven up to 200 washes and Daletec therefore guarantees the FR protection for the lifetime of the garment.
Yes. FR garments can be washed at home given the manufacturer’s instructions are carefully followed. Avoid using bleach, oxidizing agents or fabric softener for garments made out of FR fabrics. It is also best to wash such garments separately from regular clothing, especially when contaminated with e.g. oil or chemicals.
Some people are allergic to different fibers and chemicals, and these persons may need to be careful in the selection of which FR solution they choose.
Daletec products are certified according to Oeko-Tex standard 100, which is a guarantee that they are not harmful to wearers.
Yes. FR clothing can be leased or rented with the added advantage of catered launder and repair services. This model is particularly useful where workers are exposed to dirty work conditions, or where the user does not have the opportunity of laundering on site.
Daletec is supplying to various companies who are offering leasing services.
The wear life of FR fabric depends on a number of factors:
a) Quality of fiber(s) used and fabric construction
b) Strength and performance of the flame-retardant chemicals applied
c) The care applied in use and laundering of the fabric
Usually, the wear life of a good quality FR fabric, handled with care, can easily extend over many years. This is off course dependent of the work situation and roughness in use, like with all other textile garments.
Primary Protective Clothing is the clothing used by employees in a certain situation where there is an increased risk of exposure to a particular hazard such as molten substance splash, radiant heat, or flame. For instance, a firefighter turnout gear and aluminized suits would fall under primary protective clothing. (For personnel going into a risk aria, such as a house on fire)
Secondary Protective Clothing is designed for routine use in a work environment where there is an intermittent chance of exposure to risk situations is possible, such as molten metal splash, radiant heat, or flame. (For personnel that needs protection in case a incident happens, and they can be protected and get out of the situation)
Some substances can either reduce or remove the protective properties of the FR garments if used in washing and must not be used. This includes regular chlorine bleach and oxidizers; also, strong acids and other chlorine-containing chemicals may affect the properties of the FR garments.
No. There are no known hazards associated with the domestic use of FR fabrics.
Every country has its own set of local laws regulating which protection is required in different industries. Some international safety and health organizations are developing standards that are used by countries as their national standard. The best known international standard organization is ISO (International Standards Organization) but also national standards such as NFPA and ASTM standards are being referred to as a requirement by international corporations.
FR is short for Flame Retardant or Flame Resistant and refers to the ability of a fabric or product to resist a flame and heat. By definition, the FR fabric is self-extinguishing once the source of ignition is removed from the fabric. FRC is an abbreviation used for FR Clothing, quite commonly used in the industry to indicate Safety Garments or Flame Resistant Apparel.
The major industries that use FR clothing include oil and gas industry, electrical and welding industry, chemistry laboratories, mining industry and other industries with potential hazard risk such as open flames, flash fire, welding sparks, electric arc, molten metal splash, ignitable chemicals etc. Although the risks are seen globally, still local legislation in every country governs the standards of protective clothing required to be followed by the industry, resulting in different requirements for the same operation in different regions.
The treated FR fabrics such as cotton, cotton-polyesters or cotton-nylon mixes are textiles applied with flame retardant chemicals in order to achieve flame retardancy. After treatment, these fabrics then possess self-extinguishing qualities and are used to minimize the damage caused by an accident with heat and flame. Treated FR fabrics retain their protective qualities given they are used and laundered according to recommendations. Daletec treated FR materials are guaranteed to keep their FR performance throughout the lifetime of the garment, and the ability of protection even after 200 washing cycles is documented by an external lab.
An inherently resistant fabric is made from a manmade fiber or a blend of fibers that is not flammable itself and possesses resistance to heat and flame. Inherent fibers are made by adding fire resistant compounds in the initial stage of fiber production, or that the fiber itself is developed as a flame resistant fiber.
These fabrics retain their resistance qualities for life and protection cannot be removed or washed away over time.