Specialty Fabrics Review March 2020 - 50

FOCUS

ADVANCED TEXTILES

Pyrolon® Plus 2 thermally
protective, arc-rated
secondary disposable
PPE coveralls are flame
resistant and repel
water and oil. All photos:
Lakeland Industries Inc.

Safer protective apparel
New standard reduces exposure gaps to multiple hazards.
BY GLENNA B. MUSANTE

I

mproving safety apparel for workers operating in hazardous situations is a constant focus
of the textile industry, but it is a task not always easily accomplished. Hazardous materials
professionals can be exposed to any number of chemical, biological and flammable
materials in the same environment, according to The Institute of Hazardous Materials
Management (IHMM).
But much of the personal protective equipment (PPE) apparel and outerwear on the
market is designed to protect workers from a specific, or limited, hazard or hazardous
material. As a result, gaps can exist in safety apparel that have the potential to jeopardize
workers in these environments.

Advanced protection
Pyrolon® CBFR disposable secondary PPE outerwear is flame resistant,
provides advanced chemical protection and is designed to be worn over
primary FR protective and/or CHEM/
BIO PPE apparel. It was developed for
environments where arc and flash fire,
in addition to hazardous materials,
are concerns.

A NEW STANDARD
In response to these gaps, the Virginia-based International Safety Equipment Association
(ISEA) has developed a new standard that establishes performance and labeling requirements
for what is called "secondary" single-use, flame-resistant (FR) protective clothing. Secondary
apparel refers to disposable PPE outerwear worn over primary PPE apparel.
The new standard, which has been published by the American National Standards
Institute (ANSI) in cooperation with ISEA, is called ANSI/ISEA 203-2018. The standard
covers disposable, single-use, flame-resistant apparel worn in occupational environments
where there are flame hazards in addition to exposure to contaminants, such as grease, oil
or welding spatter, that can become attached to the primary flame-resistant garments worn
underneath. Secondary FR garments are routinely used in hazmat remediation, pharmaceutical
and laboratory operations, and petrochemical processing facilities.
Oil rig and utility workers, for example, are often maneuvering through environments
that pose multiple chemical and flame-related hazards. PPE apparel designed to be flame
resistant may not also provide protection from chemical contaminants. At the same time,
PPE outerwear specifically designed to protect workers from debris or chemical splatter may,
in fact, be flammable.

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Specialty Fabrics Review March 2020

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