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 Post subject: PPE Question
PostPosted: Mon Jun 29, 2009 7:32 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 29, 2009 7:22 pm
Posts: 1
I have a question that I can't seem to find an answer for, sorry if I posted in the wrong place. I work in a paper recycling plant and my boss wants us to wear our PPE FR long sleeve shirts all the time, even when I'm not anywhere near any energized equipment. Is this regulation? It is very hot in Texas and we'd like to cool off occasionally.

Please help me with this regulation!

Thanks,
Roger in TX


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 30, 2009 6:01 am 
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Joined: Fri Jan 16, 2009 1:07 pm
Posts: 67
Location: North Florida
Roger,

Having worked in the Texas heat for over 13 years I can sympathize with you. The last facility I worked at had a mandatory requirement to wear HRC2 apparel in the MCC rooms, but we could wear all cotton short sleeves outside the rooms unless we were exposed to an electrical hazard. You really are asking two questions: "Does NFPA 70E reqire you to wear the HRC2 all the time" and "Can my employer dictate what I am to wear on the job?"

The answer to the first question is no - NFPA does not require PPE unless exposed to an electrical hazard. I'm not an HR person so I cannot definitively answer the second question. But I suspect that they can in fact dictate your clothing, particularly if they are providing it.

Perhaps you can open a dialog with your safety manager about the risk of heat stress while wearing long sleeves during the summer in the Texas heat. I figure you're either in Dallas where it gets 105-110 many days in the summer or in Houston where it's 96 with 100% relative humidity darn near all the time. Also, you might can argue that wearing the arc flash PPE all the time creates a risk of contamination which, according to 70E, will require the replacement of the PPE prior to exposure, defeating the purpose of wearing it all the time.

A solution may be to have some small lockers strategically placed where you can store your shirts and have them readily accessable when you need them. You and any colleagues then need to agree to wear them when required. In any case, I would try to discuss this with my safety manager. Good luck in your efforts.

TxEngr


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 9:38 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 8:59 am
Posts: 7
Location: Tennessee
Roger,

As TxEngr stated the standard doesn't require the protection unless you are exposed to the hazard. But many companies are requiring HRC Level 2 protection as daily wear to ensure compliance from the work force. You may suggest your employer look into some of the FR knit options available.

70E Arc Protection


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 22, 2009 7:09 pm 
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Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2009 5:06 pm
Posts: 3
Location: SE Wisconsin
Arc flash turning sweat into steam doesn't sound like the way to go. There's supposed to be some new sweat wicking hrc2 clothes out, in one of the last two editions of EC&M or Electrical Contractor. I just tossed them all on Monday, so I can't look them up for you. They might be on http://www.ecmweb.com


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 22, 2009 10:04 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 8:59 am
Posts: 7
Location: Tennessee
HRC Level 2 Wicking Tee Shirt

Hey Guys,

Their are some new products on the market. Their are some knits out that you need to be careful about, but their also some really nice products. One is the Pro-C knit by NSA, check it out at, http://www.shop.70earcprotection.com/product.sc?categoryId=8&productId=38

70E Arc Protection


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