Innovating future FR and arc flash clothing with Tower Supplies

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Tower Supplies are at the forefront of innovative and protective gear. Learn the best arc flash garment combinations to keep you safe and explore the future of FR and arc flash clothing.

Tower are experts in PPE and workwear, with over 40 years experience in the industry. We understand that every business's needs are different, so we work with them to create and deliver the very best workwear solutions for their situation. Protecting workers to the highest standard is our top priority. We also understand that staying safe whilst staying on brand and recognisable is important to many businesses.

What is flame retardant(FR) and arc flash and why is it important?

Flame retardant (FR) & arc flash PPE is a crucial type of protective clothing. It can mean the difference between life and death for those working with fire and electrical hazards. FR & arc flash clothing is essential for industries such as electrical utilities, oil and gas, manufacturing, construction, and more, where workers are at risk from severe burns and other life-threatening injuries.

Flame-retardant (FR) and fire-retardant clothing serve as critical protective barriers, engineered to safeguard individuals against the perils of flames and thermal exposure. These specialised garments offer a formidable defence, capable of withstanding the intense heat generated not only by flames but also by the powerful electrical arcs that pose significant risks in various industrial settings.

Through effectively employing Fire Bear Arc Flash garments and PPE, you can lessen and potentially avoid the injuries sustained through an arc flash incident. But there is always an element of risk when working in an environment where there is the potential for an arc flash incident.

By incorporating advanced materials and meticulous design, these garments provide a vital layer of protection. This ensures the safety and well-being of wearers amidst hazardous environments.

Electrical hazards

What is arc flash PPE?

Wearing arc flash and arc-rated clothing is vital to protect against arc flash threats. Additional testing is necessary for arc flash and arc-rated clothing - it's put through a series of arc flashes to see how much energy it can withstand before causing 2nd-degree burns on the wearer. Arc flash workwear has been developed to make it simpler for employers and customers to determine whether the apparel a person is wearing provides enough protection against arc flash.

Flame retardant

What is flame retardant PPE?

Employees wearing FR clothes are protected from fire-related dangers such as embers, flames, and flash fires. Despite its name, fire retardant clothing is NOT fireproof. It can and will catch fire. But FR is made to self-extinguish, so once lit, it will not keep burning. This means that wearing FR clothes can lessen the severity of a user's burn damage. Fire retardant clothing also protects against clothes melting onto the skin and provides thermal insulation.

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What’s the difference between flame resistant, fire resistant, and fire retardant?

While 'flame resistant,' 'fire resistant,' and 'fire retardant' are often used interchangeably, they do have distinct meanings:

  1. Flame Resistant (FR): Flame-resistant materials are designed to resist catching fire and, if they do ignite, they self-extinguish quickly. These materials are treated or inherently resistant to flames and do not continue to burn after the ignition source is removed. FR materials are commonly used in clothing, textiles, and other applications where fire safety is crucial.
  2. Fire Resistant: The term 'fire resistant' is broader and can refer to materials or products that are resistant to catching fire or sustaining combustion. While similar to flame resistance, fire resistance may not always include the ability to self-extinguish. This term is often used in various industries to describe materials or products that have been tested and proven to withstand exposure to fire to a certain extent without significant damage.
  3. Fire Retardant: 'Fire retardant' refers to materials or substances that are treated with chemicals to reduce their flammability. These chemicals inhibit or delay the combustion process when the treated material is exposed to fire or heat. Fire retardants are commonly used in textiles, furnishings, building materials, and other products to improve fire safety.

While all three terms relate to reducing the risk of fire-related injuries, 'flame resistant' specifically implies the ability to resist catching fire and self-extinguish, 'fire resistant' refers to materials that resist catching fire or sustaining combustion to some degree, and 'fire retardant' denotes materials treated with chemicals to reduce flammability.

Flame-resistant and arc flash clothing

FR & arc flash PPE & protective clothing that ensures safety and compliance when working with fire/electricals.
FR Arc

What is the future of FR and arc flash clothing?

Tower Supplies prioritises long-term advantages that will help your company grow in the future above unit pricing. We offer services, product knowledge, and site safety surveys that are unmatched. We provide a variety of creative solutions with an emphasis on eco-friendly safety gear, protective apparel, and health and hygiene products.

Why the demand for lightweight protection?

FR and arc flash protective clothing has always been seen as hot, heavy, and cumbersome to wear. That’s why 10 years ago we made it our primary assignment to create, continually evolve, and develop a leading high-quality and lightweight FR & arc solution - FireBear. The original requirement was for wearers to be able to comfortably use FireBear in the summer, whilst being equally protected from risk.

We've been working with various utility providers and operators for more than 10 years to create FireBear, being actively involved in PPE development with the organisations. We've also built up expertise and a high level of knowledge of the sector, requirements, and safety standards.

Innovative lightweight EN 61482 protection

The latest FireBear garments are manufactured using an innovative new interlocked fabric, chosen to provide more protection with less layers.

By working with fibre manufacturers, weavers, and production plants, we have produced an innovative range to make the workplace safer and better for key workers. Our range includes every garment in every layer from thermal layers to lightweight waterproof coats and jackets.

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Learn how we first developed and evolved the FireBear range as a direct response to the needs of leading energy provider SSE.

SSE Firebear

SSE FireBear Case Study

Developing innovative range of FR & ARC flash protective workwear with SSE.

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SSE Firebear

SSE FireBear Case Study

Developing innovative range of FR & ARC flash protective workwear with SSE.

Explore our comprehensive range of PPE clothing

Explore our protective clothing range, including base layers, high visibility, specialist garments, and industry-specific products. We stock various sizes and colours of protective clothing, featuring major brands, our signature collections, and female-tailored workwear. Our brand commitment is to provide top-quality protective workwear for construction and all manual-working industries, ensuring safety and performance in even the most challenging environments.

View our product ranges

Click below to download all our catalogues and read the EN Standards that relate to the safety product categories we provide. We have everything you'll need to wear at work, whether looking smart or staying safe. We also have all the equipment and supplies you need to keep your workplace safe and clean.

EN Standards

EN standards are a commitment to best practices to improve the health and safety conditions for all European workers.
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SSE Clothing

Our FireBear Workwear Range | Exclusive To Tower

Find out all about our exclusive range of premium FR and arc flash clothing, FireBear, and how we developed it alongside leading utility providers.

Download these expert guides...

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ARC Flash Guide

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Protective Clothing Guide

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