As we all adjust to a new normal in the era of COVID-19, safety is more essential than ever. This month, the Westex team will travel to Austin, TX, to participate in ASSP Safety 2021—a major professional conference bringing together the safety industry.
NFPA® 70E provides a system of checks and balances to account for electrical hazard safety on your job site. The hierarchy of risk controls provides safety managers and employers a host of administrative and engineering tools to help prevent arc flash incidents and mitigate injuries should an incident occur. Because the onus falls to employers, using the full range of mitigative controls available to you makes both fiscal and business sense—and one of the most effective tools available is the use of personal protective equipment (PPE).
If you’ve been involved in the oil & gas, electrical, or industrial manufacturing industries, chances are you’re familiar with personal protective equipment—PPE for short. PPE plays a critical role in protecting workers who face any number of job site hazards, from combustible dust, flash fire and arc flash incidents to electrical shock and fall hazards and everything in between. PPE is relevant beyond these industries, too, as a key protective asset of the medical and healthcare fields down to general housekeeping.
Setting the tone for the latest edition, the 2021 NFPA® 70E® Standard cover prominently features the hierarchy of risk controls, first introduced in the 2018 edition. Recommitting and reemphasizing the importance of the hierarchy of risk controls, the cover—and the standard as a whole—draws attention to this tool, which helps the electrical industry identify risk prevention and mitigation controls for those working on energized systems. Many of the updates and changes found in the 2021 edition bring the hierarchy of risk controls into sharper focus.
Back when the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA®) first introduced the term arc-rated (AR) in its 2012 edition of NFPA 70E®, there was confusion about how exactly it applied in the world of protective garments. Even today, questions still linger about the term and how it relates to its counterpart, flame-resistant (FR)—what is the difference between them, exactly?
For more than 70 years, we have made leading innovative flame-resistant (FR), arc-rated (AR) fabrics that serve a variety of industrial and technical industries. We engineer our fabrics from the inside out to guarantee their flame-resistant properties for the life of the garment—where many competing fabrics cannot make the same claim.
By now, you know how much we stress sourcing the FR/AR fabric used in your daily wear or PPE garments. It’s important to know who makes the fabric, how the fabric performs in a battery of industry tests and, most importantly, how it performs on the job. It’s not enough to simply know it’s NFPA® 2112-certified or if it provides Category 2 protection according to NFPA® 70E, for example; you need to know and trust in the fabric brand itself.
We are firm believers in this approach for one simple reason—it’s what’s right for our customers and end users.
Are you a March Madness fan? Chances are, you’ve never contemplated the similarities between zone defense of your favorite basketball team and the “defense” that flame-resistant (FR)/arc-rated (AR) PPE plays in mitigating thermal hazard risks in workplace settings. In either case, solid zone defense and FR/AR PPE do more than just one job.
Westex Launches Mobile App to Streamline FR/AR Product Selection Process
The first-to-market tool matches products to global safety standards
SPARTANBURG, SC (Feb. 9, 2021)—Westex: A Milliken Brand, announced today the launch of a new product selection app, the Westex App, developed to provide users a way to custom build a FR/AR uniform based on their workforce’s individual safety standard requirements. The free mobile app is available for iOS and Android mobile devices. Read More
Westex and Polartec Debut Polartec Flame Resistant Collection
Two category leaders collaborate to produce flame resistant/arc-rated knits
certified for the job with overtime comfort.
SPARTANBURG, S.C. — Two Milliken & Company textile businesses—Westex®, a leader in dual-hazard protective textiles, and Polartec®, the premium provider of innovative and sustainable textile solutions—announce a new collection of flame-resistant (FR), arc-rated (AR) knit fabric. Known as the Polartec FR Collection, the collection introduces three unique Polartec fabric constructions engineered with Westex FR/AR fabric technology that provides trusted thermal hazard protection. The products span shirting, insulation and weather resistance fabrics that meet or exceed worldwide protection standards for even the most demanding industries, including oil & gas, electrical, construction, and military use.
Those who work in the industrial environment face multiple threats. In this instance, we’ll focus on intense electric-related hazards, specifically electric arcs. During an electric arc, temperatures can reach up to 35,000°F, or 20.000°C (that’s hotter than the surface of the sun), so wearing the proper flame retardant (FR) PPE is paramount. Let’s take a look at how you can help make sure your team is up to standard and adequately protected—and how your location globally plays a critical role in doing just that.