Treated vs inherent FR
When choosing your FR clothing, it’s important to understand the difference between treated and inherent FR. Do you know?
A guide to the FR & arc flash PPE & protective clothing that will keep you safe at work.
Flame retardant (FR) & arc flash PPE is a crucial type of protective clothing. And it can mean the difference between life and death for those working with fire and electrical hazards. As a complex type of PPE, understanding the different standards and terms is as important as it is challenging.
Not all FR clothing gives you arc flash protection. But all arc flash clothing IS flame retardant. This is because FR clothing is only arc flash rated if it has been tested and certified according to arc flash suit standards. It is crucial that you read the labels of garments and equipment. If an arc flash hazard is apparent, check your PPE for the ‘AR’ label. A garment labelled ‘FR’ will NOT be sufficient.
Employees wearing FR clothes are protected from fire-related dangers such as embers, flames, and flash fires. Despite its name, FR 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. FR also protects against clothes melting onto the skin and provides thermal insulation.
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 is 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 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.
FireBear is our signature range of specialist anti-static, flame retardant and arc flash rated protective workwear. FireBear was developed with wearers over extensive trial periods to achieve record levels of user acceptance and satisfaction, whilst enduring the toughest environments.
FireBear’s layer concept means (when combined correctly) it’s possible to achieve EN 61482 Electric Arc Class 2, while maintaining comfort. Download our FireBear guide to arc flash PPE below.