BTTG 01.04.15 099

Industrial Workwear

Overview

Protective clothing is extensively worn to protect the wearer against a range of hazards including flame, radiant heat, convective heat, contact heat, molten metal, weld spatter and accidental contact with live electrical conductors.

Typically industrial coveralls or jacket/trouser systems are tested, however, many of the requirements apply to hoods, aprons, sleeves and gaitors. The main applicable performance standards are:

  1. EN ISO 11611 – Protective clothing for use in welding and allied processes.
  2. EN ISO 11612 – Protective clothing – Clothing to protect against heat and flame.
  3. EN ISO 14116 – Protective clothing – Protection against heat and flame – Limited flame spread materials, material assemblies and clothing.
  4. NFPA 2112 – Standard on flame-resistant garments for protection of industrial personnel against flash fire.

Test requirements

The aforementioned EN ISO performance standards have many similar requirements which does keep the amount of testing needed to a minimum. The majority of the test requirements are mandatory, however, ISO 11612 does provide optional tests which are chosen on the outcome of a risk assessment of the hazards found in practice.

Mandatory tests:

  • Heat resistance at 180°C (EN ISO 11612 only) – ISO 17493
  • Flame spread – ISO 15025
  • Dimensional change – ISO 5077
  • Tensile, tear & seam strength or burst strength – ISO 13934-1, ISO 13937-2 & ISO 13935-2 or ISO 13938-1
  • Innocuousness – pH or chromium content – ISO 3071 or ISO 17075
  • Impact of spatter (EN ISO 11611 only) – ISO 9150
  • Heat transfer (radiation) (EN ISO 11611 only) – ISO 6942
  • Electrical resistance (EN ISO 11611 only) – EN 1149-2 (performed at a modified temperature and relative humidity)

Optional tests (all relate to ISO 11612):

  • Heat resistance at 260°C – ISO 17493
  • Water penetration Code letter W) – EN 343
  • Convective heat (Code letter B) – ISO 9151
  • Radiant heat (Code letter C) – ISO 6942
  • Molten aluminium splash (Code letter D) – ISO 9185
  • Molten iron splash (Code letter E) – ISO 9185
  • Contact heat (Code letter F) – ISO 12127

NFPA 2112 is used in America to assess the performance of industrial workwear and although the tests are similar to those listed above, ASTM test methods are used. A significant difference is that NFPA 2112 makes manikin testing mandatory and imposes pass/fail criteria for such testing.

For further information, please contact Chris Dean (+44 (0)161 876 4211 cdean@bttg-fts.co.uk) who will be happy to discuss your requirements.