Category Archives: General

Elevating Performance Standards: How Westex by Milliken is Raising the Bar on Testing Protocols

Part of designing reputable protective fabrics is ensuring they provide certified, consistent results both in the lab and in the field—otherwise, end users may be at risk. Flame resistant (FR), arc-rated (AR) fabrics incorporated into personal protective equipment (PPE) act as a final layer of defense against hazards like arc flashes and flash fires, so these fabrics must perform. But how does a company like Westex by Milliken assess performance? We sat down with James Cliver, senior development engineer for Westex by Milliken, to learn more about how FR/AR fabrics are tested and why standard testing protocols are a crucial indicator of performance.

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Using Customer Insights to Inspire Meaningful Innovation

When we look to develop new flame resistant (FR) technologies, we often draw inspiration from unmet needs in the industry. Many times, our conversations in the field help us better identify areas where we can fill a gap to better protect workers in the electrical and oil and gas industries against arc flashes and flash fires. We sat down with Paul Castelli, international sales director for Westex by Milliken, to learn more about how Westex develops new technologies.

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Tailored to Women: The Case for Utilizing Women-Specific FR/AR Garments in the Workplace

Until recently, flame resistant (FR), arc-rated (AR) garments were one size fits all—meaning both men and women wore the same styles. Women in the oil and gas and electrical industries thus donned ill-fitting FR/AR garments day in and day out, because these garments were largely constructed with men in mind. Typically, women have to find FR/AR garments that mostly fit then adjust them throughout the day as they shift out of place.

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The Last Line of Defense: Four Ways Daily Wear FR/AR PPE Improves Safety Programs

For worksites where short-term thermal hazards are present, flame resistant (FR), arc-rated (AR) personal protective equipment (PPE) is a critical component in providing protection in the event of an unexpected incident, like arc flash, flash fire, or dust combustion. While key, however, it is important to note that when designing your safety program, daily wear FR/AR PPE is one of many parts of a comprehensive thermal hazard mitigation program.

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Cone Denim and Westex by Milliken continue partnership for stylish FR denim daily wear

Collaboration is key for discovering creative and sustainable solutions to meet customers’ needs. To that end, we are excited to share our successful collaboration with Cone Denim – leaders in premium denim for consumer apparel – will be renewed to continue offering our customers cutting-edge arc rated (AR) flame resistant (FR) denim. Our two brands exclusively produce and distribute the FR denim Westex Indigo® to meet the safety and wearability needs of industrial workers.

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Specifying Proper PPE Clothing to Protect Against Hazards in the Aluminum Industry

aluminum industry thermal hazards

While the aluminum industry can generally be a safe place to work, there are occupational hazards that employees need to be aware of and actively guard themselves against. It is important for safety managers to fully assess the workplace for the risk of potential short-term thermal hazards and design a safety program that fits their employees’ needs. When developing safety initiatives in the workplace, it is important to consider incorporating arc rated (AR) and flame resistant (FR) primary and secondary personal protective equipment (PPE) to help mitigate injury should an incident occur.

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Four Ways Clothing Can Contribute to Reducing the Impact of Heat Stress


Heat stress can be a serious concern year round, but it is especially prevalent in the warmer summer months. There are many factors that contribute to an increased risk of heat stress including high external temperature, humidity levels, sun exposure, lack of breeze, not drinking enough water, intensity of labor, and heat-trapping PPE. Work attire is often overlooked when analyzing heat stress factors, but when coupled with rest, hydration, and shade, it may help lessen the likelihood of heat stress. Here are four tips to use clothing to your advantage to help prevent the impact of heat stress on a day-to-day basis.

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Westex Launching New Style for Popular Westex® DH Performance FR Fabric at ASSP Safety 2019, Booth 1727

Every year, safety professionals, manufacturers and more gather at ASSP Safety to attend educational seminars, review best practices, discuss industry trends and find the latest innovations in safety. Westex by Milliken is a regular exhibitor, and we always enjoy connecting with others who have the same mission we do: to protect industrial workers daily.  Westex® branded FR fabrics cover a multitude of jobsite hazards, including offering proven protection to help mitigate impacts of short-term thermal exposures, like flash fire and arc flash. At ASSP Safety 2019, we’re excited to expand our line of industry-leading FR textiles with new styles for Westex® DH performance FR fabric.

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Three Ways to Use AR/FR PPE to Stay Safe on the Job

May is Electrical Safety Month, which is a good reminder to ensure your team’s safety efforts are in line with the updated industry consensus standard NFPA 70E. Workers in the electrical field are exposed to unexpected hazards, including arc flashes, so safety precautions should be reviewed frequently to help reduce the risk of injury. Thorough risk assessments are required to reduce the likelihood of arc flash incident occurrence and you can never be too careful when it comes to protecting workers, so PPE is employed, as the last risk control, to mitigate the severity of injury should an arc flash incident occur.

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Understanding Primary vs. Secondary FR Protection

Safety managers have a very important decision to make when determining the type of personal protective equipment (PPE) that their team needs. Before nailing down the fabric, apparel and PPE brands they would like to select, they first need to determine whether their team, or even specific members of their team, require primary or secondary FR protection to help perform their job responsibilities as safely as possible.

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