Keeping cool whilst staying safe

Keeping cool whilst staying safe

With the unpredictability of British weather, it can be hard to know whether you need to break out the sun cream or bring your waterproofs with you in any given day. 

For those working in high-risk environments with the potential of an arc flash incident, this can create conflicting working conditions as most PPE is designed to ensure the body is fully covered, and therefore inherently warm.  It’s crucial that those who need it are wearing the right combination of layers to achieve full protection, regardless of the weather. 

The dangers of mis-layering

We know just how easy it is to indivertibly undermine the performance of arc-flash rated PPE by wearing items like an everyday t-shirt as a base layer, or shop-bought underwear rather than specialist, in the hope that the remaining protective outer layers will provide the protection needed.

This is compounded further when the sun is shining and temperatures soaring, creating the risk of heat stress for those wearing PPE.  Outer layers are often discarded and layers removed  or sleeves rolled up to try and help control body temperature and comfort levels whilst working, creating huge vulnerabilities in the protection offered by the remaining garments.

This is where some very clever fabric technology comes into play.

The science part

Breathable fabrics are key to helping regulate body temperature in warm environments.  These are essentially fabrics that allow moisture to pass through them, helping balance humidity between the skin and a garment. 

There are two types of moisture systems to be aware of:

Wicking: Fibres channel moisture along the filament through ‘capillary actions’ pulling moisture to the fabric surface.

Push/Pull Actions: Fabrics utilise a double layered approach with the inner part typically moving moisture away from the surface and an outer acting as a hydrophilic or ‘waterloving’ layer, which will help the moisture to spread out and evaporate from the surface.

Breathable fabrics are also usually lighter than conventional materials, designed with better airflow in mind.  This means that the body can use its natural cooling process to reduce the risk of heat stress and create more.

ProGARM’s range of breathable clothing has been designed to help your body moderate its core temperature while protecting you from the main hazards of your work, including Arc Flash incidents, fire risk, spills, shocks and explosive environments.

To talk through our product ranges or understand more about fabric innovation, give our team of specialists a call on +44 (0) 1482 679600 or email info@progarmcurrent.wpengine.com.

Make sure that you’re specifying the right PPE for your team.

Read our free guide on the top considerations when choosing Arc Flash clothing & PPE below and make the best choice for you and your team via the link below ⬇.

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