For electricians and electric power industry workers the threat of electrical arc is the most serious they face. During their short blasts, flash hazard temperatures can be literally hotter than the sun. Combine this with the pressure wave from the explosion and searing flying metallic particles, and you’ve got yourself a seriously bad situation. The clothing electrical workers choose can play an important role in how serious an injury is received in the event of one of these arc blasts.
The knock on flame resistant clothing has always been how uncomfortable it is. It’s stiff, crinkly, and basically unwearable until it’s been washed a bunch of times. And guess what? Once the old stuff got soft, the FR qualities had basically been washed down the drain.
MCR has introduced a new line of FR clothing that not only protects, but is also comfortable right out of the mailbox. Their FR Gear Max Comfort Work Shirt S1T is made of 88 percent cotton and 12 percent nylon FR sateen fabric. The old FR gear is like wearing a shirt made of cardboard compared to this stuff.
They’ve also got regular, good-looking jeans that are flame resistant. Once again, these guys are NFPA 70E Hazard/Risk Category HRC 2, NFPA 2112 UL Certified, and meet ASTM F1506 Electric Arc Protection standards. Which is great, but really it’s all about the comfort factor. Nobody wants to wear jeans that make them walk like the Tin Man (pre-oil).
And get ready, because OSHA, who we know moves at a glacial pace, is on the cusp of creating new standards for FR clothing. They have been on this cusp since 2005, but still for OSHA this is news. They might leap at any moment!