Feature – Fighting Fire With Fire – Tranemo

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Tranemo’s TeraTx & TeraTx Stretch Offer Exceptional Performance with Lightweight FR/Arc Protection

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Can you give us an outline of your flame retardant product?

Tranemo are one of Europe’s leading manufacturers of technical Flame Retardant / Arc Flash clothing and as such we have many years’ experience in developing and manufacturing flame retardant clothing. Our strong belief is there is not a ‘one garment fits all’ scenario – diverse environments and hazards require different solutions. Our market leading TeraTx range is a proven range for use in FR / Arc environments where a lighter weight, more flexible garment is needed – such as infrastructure working or electrical maintenance. We have further enhanced this range with our next generation TeraTx Stretch garments – designed to give maximum comfort and mobility whilst still providing the protection required.

What wider trends have you noticed around flame retardant products how have you responded to these?

The last five years has seen an exponential growth in market demand for FR / Arc solutions. Our view is that End Users should always look for a manufacturer that has a proven track record of making garments and that also has robust quality control in its supply chain. Tranemo invest heavily in this area and we own our production facility in Europe – meaning the consistent quality and performance of our garments is guaranteed. We have also always made sure that we have ladies’ sizes in our core ranges; having these choices readily available in stock is becoming increasingly important to End Users, particularly in the UK market.

How important is the fabric for flame retardant clothing?

Fabric choice is vitally important. Our view is that garments should always be made using inherent fabrics as opposed to chemically treated ones. This is because the protection offered with inherent fabrics is integral to the fibres used in the construction of the fabric – meaning performance will not be degraded over the garment’s lifetime. Chemically treated fabrics, whilst cheaper, will degrade as the chemical treatments wash and wear out. We tested an inherent Tranemo garment that had been industrially laundered for eight years and it still passed all the relevant EN standard tests for FR!

How do you choose the fabric that will be used?

Tranemo do not believe in a ‘multinorm’ concept, frequently used by manufacturers to try and apply one product solution to many different and varied environments. We believe in creating different ranges specific to applications – working with electricity, working with molten metal, needing high visibility, as examples. When we develop ranges for a sector, we start by understanding the End Users problems within the sector to give us a ‘wish list’. We then work with fabric manufacturers to develop a fabric blend that best meets these requirements. We undergo extensive testing with End Users to assess performance of the fabric/garments and gather feedback. Only then do we progress to the final development of a garment range, knowing when a new range is launched, it will meet the demands of the specific environments it has been
created for.

Is there anything, as a supplier, you wish to explain or state to the sector about this topic?

Flame retardant risks – especially Electric Arc – are complicated issues. It is important for End Users to get input from responsible and ethical manufacturers who have extensive experience. Protection against Electric Arc means it is vital to take a ‘holistic’ approach and not only choose the correct protective clothing, but also complimentary PPE. It is a well-known fact that life changing 2nd and 3rd degree burns that can occur from an Arc Flash will frequently affect the hands and face. Many End Users overlook this and continue to use non-FR PPE. In an Arc Flash incident, incorrect PPE could result in making injuries much worse (for instance if a coated glove smelted in an Arc Flash and stuck to the hand).
It is preciously for this reason that we now also offer a full range of complimentary FR/Arc Flash PPE as well as our extensive range of FR/Arc Workwear and Rainwear.
For more information visit www.tranemoworkwear.com
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