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Arc Flash Protection to A c F H


Stay warm, stay safe– making sure your team is winter-ready when it comes to Arc Flash protection


e – mak


As the warmer months come to an end and the colder and darker months begin to draw in, protecting workers from the elements of the winter weather becomes a priority.


owever, it’s important that this protection from the harsh winter does not compromise on protection


against Arc Flash - a relatively misunderstood, but extremely common type of electrical explosion. With this in mind, Mark Lant, technical expert


at ProGARM, Arc Flash protective clothing specialists, explains five factors that must be considered to ensure workers are both warm and comfortable, as well as safe, this winter.


1. Layering It can be very tempting for workers to layer up during the colder months to help stay warm while outdoors. However, many workers are unaware of the dangers that are posed to them by layering up with every-day, non arc- resistant, garments beneath their outer PPE. In reality, the material worn beneath an Arc


Flash protective jacket or trousers is just as crucial to protecting from the event as outer clothing. While the flames caused by an Arc Flash may not actually come into contact with skin or indeed the clothing beneath the protective outer layers, the extreme heat from the event can melt the materials used to


ewnews.co.uk


manufacture everyday undergarments, including nylon, cotton, and polypropylene. This will inflict burns on an operative and potentially cause any day-to-day undergarments and layers to melt into the skin underneath their PPE. In order to not compromise on safety, whilst also ensuring workers stay warm during the colder weather, workers should layer up with Arc Flash protective base layers, such as leggings, tops, gloves and even underwear and socks, beneath their outer garments.


2. Breathability During winter, wearing layers of PPE that trap moisture is not only uncomfortable, but can also be dangerous. If a garment’s material is not sufficiently breathable, moisture can remain on the skin, which can cause a chilling effect and even lead to hypothermia. Arc Flash protective clothing that is manufactured from inherent protective fibres instead of a protective coating added post-production, allows breathability and moisture management. The fabric readily absorbs sweat and then dries quickly, meaning that worker can stay warm in winter, without overheating if wearing multiple layers.


●Continued over October 2019 electrical wholesaler | 21


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