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 Post subject: Name Tags on FR Shirts
PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 11:58 am 
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I am getting inquiries about the need for name tags on shirts to be FR or not. My answer is always that nothing flammable should be exposed, per the standards. My feeling however is that a 3" x 2" tag will likely not cause death or serious injury by itself. Opinions please.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 12:52 pm 
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I've always had the understanding that our arc flash clothing was fire retardant, e.g. it would burn but would not sustain a flame once the fire source was removed. That is the reason that the FR clothing must cover all combustible clothing and nothing combustible such as a non-FR jacket can be worn. In the event of an arc flash, the non-FR clothing would continue to burn providing a flame source for the FR clothing causing injury to the wearer. The manufacturers also tell you to make repairs only with FR material. On that basis, I would think that a name patch made from non-FR material would not be permitted since it would provide a combustion point.

I'm by no means an expert on this and welcome more knowledgable opinions.

TxEngr


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 1:38 pm 
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Exactly, but I am curious as to how much damage a small tag could do given that the garment will not burn at arc flash energy levels. Of course, then one would have to decide how big the tag could be.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 11:45 pm 
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I did some quick research and found a "white paper" on the Bulwark web site ( http://www.bulwark.com/product2/images/BU/Application%20of%20Non-FR%20Emblems%20&%20Embroidery.pdf ). Their position is:

"Whether it is appropriate to attach non-FR embroidery and emblems to flame resistant protective garments is always a difficult question to address. The only comment of the consensus standards writing organizations, such as NFPA and ASTM, is that nothing on an article of clothing may increase the extent of wearer injury in case of garment ignition. ASTM in Standard F-1506, Standard Performance Specification for Flame Resistant Textile Materials for Wearing Apparel for Use by Electrical Workers Exposed to Momentary Electric Arc and Related Thermal Hazards states in an appendix item that,
“Logos, name tags, and other heraldry should be limited in number and surface areaâ€. No OSHA or military standards address this area. SFI, the race driver’s association, has not addressed this issue. However, identification and personalization are clearly safety
issues in themselves that must be addressed by end users. In the final analysis, the end user of the garment must weigh the benefits of identification and personalization against the potential risk from using non-flame resistant materials. ommon sense in the size, placement, and number of these materials is the best solution."

So not a definitive answer but more food for thought.

TxEngr


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 30, 2009 12:38 am 
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Thanks for the input!


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 30, 2009 12:19 pm 
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Here's what I heard about that issue (can't cite anything or anybody as I don't know the original source):

You've got two choices for logos, either a logo which is FR or a logo which is not.
If the logo is FR (let's say the same material as the rest of the garment), then the thread can be FR or not.
If the logo is not FR, then the thread needs to NOT be FR as well. The reasoning is that the thread will burn/melt more quickly than the logo, so the logo will fall off, and the FR garment will stop being exposed to a flame from the logo.
Of course the FR logo option is pricier than the other one.

I'd prefer to see an authoritative source on this. I don't have my CSA Z462 nor my NFPA 70E at hand, but I think there's an ASTM standard cited in those about logos and the like.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 30, 2009 8:45 pm 
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I am pretty sure I read somewhere that silk thread was used for non FR tags for that very reason....Thanks


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 30, 2009 10:18 pm 
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Vincent B. wrote:
I'd prefer to see an authoritative source on this. I don't have my CSA Z462 nor my NFPA 70E at hand, but I think there's an ASTM standard cited in those about logos and the like.


It is ASTM F1506, but I thought it said all the thread used for alterations, etc, needed to be FR. I know the fabric manufactures (I.E. Westex) provide spare thread to the garment manufactures (I.E. Bulwark, Salisbury) for this very reason. I have the real ruling on this on my work computer and will post it when I get back to the office.


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 5:29 am 
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Thanks Zog, Look forward to the info.....BTW Just had a client inform me that his boss said it would cost $3800.00 for the FR name tags, they were not worth the cost, and the discussion was over because it was not going to happen.


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 5:39 am 
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Importance of FR thread; heraldry, text, etc.

It is in my opinion that all FR garment heraldry shall be flame resistant (FR) including embroidered logos and embroidered name tags.

According to ASTM F1506-02a Section 6.1, "Thread, findings and closures used in garment construction shall not contribute to the severity of injuries to the wearer in the event of a momentary electric arc or related thermal exposure."

Also pertinent is Section 6.1.1 "Sewing thread utilized in the construction of garments shall be made of an inherently flame-resistant fiber and shall not melt when tested at a temperature of 260 (degrees celcius, or 500 degrees fehrenheit) in accordance with Federal Test Method Standard 191A, 1534."

In the best interest of your worker's safety, any consumer of Electrical Specific PPE should narrow their decision making process to manufacturers who employ the most conservative interpretation to ASTM Sections 6.1 and 6.1.1.

I feel that embroidery thread is part of the garment construction and that all thread used in the FR garment manufacturing process SHALL be inherently flame resistant. There is a concentration of thread in the embroidery which adds a significant fuel source in one section of the garment. Flammable thread could ignite and continue to burn causing increased burn injury under this area of the garment. In addition to the thread ignition problem there is also a thread melting hazard (polyester or nylon fibers) which is a protection concern if the garment is worn against your worker's skin.

NON-FR Embroidery thread is one example of how many manufacturers cut corners in an effort to keep their costs low. Beware! Not only is non-FR thread common, but so is non-FR collar fusing, non-FR buttons, and non-FR tags. Until ASTM F2621 is referenced in 70E or Z462 there will be no way for end users or consumers to fully understand how their arc rated FR garment performs "as sold".

Cheers,
Jim Pollard


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 31, 2009 6:00 am 
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Thanks Jim


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2009 7:42 am 
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acobb wrote:
Thanks Zog, Look forward to the info.....BTW Just had a client inform me that his boss said it would cost $3800.00 for the FR name tags, they were not worth the cost, and the discussion was over because it was not going to happen.


Looks like Jim beat me to it, (good stuff Jim, thanks). I had this discussion a few years back with a client, they had an expensive quote for the tags too and asked me what my professional recomendations was. My answer, learn everyones name, skip the tags.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 03, 2009 10:47 pm 
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The two key standards for FR clothing are ASTM F1506 “Flame Resistant Textile Materials for Wearing Apparel for use by Electrical Workers Exposed to Momentary Electric Arc and Related Thermal Hazardsâ€, and NFPA 2112 “Flame Resistant Garments for Protection of Industrial Personnel Against Flash Fireâ€.

ASTM F1506: In section 6.1.1 the standard states “Sewing thread utilized in the construction of the garment shall be made of an inherently flame resistant fiber and shall not meltâ€. This section specifically refers to construction thread not embroidery. The inference is, because embroidery thread is not construction thread, it does not have to be FR.

In addition, in Appendix X1.2.5 it states “Logos, name tags, and other heraldry, such as flag patches and company award insignias, are used to identify the organization and individual. If these items are constructed of non-flame resistant materials (such as polyester or rayon), their overall area should be minimized on the garmentâ€. This appendix statement although not mandatory does allow for non-FR name tags as long as it is does not cover a large area.

NFPA 2112: In section 7.1.4.1 the standard states “Labels and emblems shall not be required to be tested for heat resistanceâ€. The lack of need to test labels and emblems would indicate they are not required to be FR. The standards definition of an emblem is “Shields, heraldry, or printing that designates a governmental entity or a specific organization; rank, title, position, or other professional status that is painted, screened, embroidered, sewn, glued, bonded, or otherwise attached in a permanent mannerâ€.

In addition in section 7.2 Thread Requirements, it states “Specimens of all sewing thread utilized in the construction of flame resistant garments, excluding embroidery, shall be made of an inherently flame resistant fiberâ€. This statement specifically excludes the need for embroidery to be FR.

These two standards appear to allow non-FR tags and embroidery. It is Workrite's policy to use non-FR thread to apply non-FR tags so that they will fall off if ignited. It is true that FR tags are available but they are quite expensive.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 04, 2009 1:01 am 
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Thanks a bunch msaner!!!!


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 04, 2009 1:12 am 
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msaner@workrite.com wrote:
The two key standards for FR clothing are ASTM F1506 “Flame Resistant Textile Materials for Wearing Apparel for use by Electrical Workers Exposed to Momentary Electric Arc and Related Thermal Hazardsâ€, and NFPA 2112 “Flame Resistant Garments for Protection of Industrial Personnel Against Flash Fireâ€.

ASTM F1506: In section 6.1.1 the standard states “Sewing thread utilized in the construction of the garment shall be made of an inherently flame resistant fiber and shall not meltâ€. This section specifically refers to construction thread not embroidery. The inference is, because embroidery thread is not construction thread, it does not have to be FR.


I disagree, the thread needs to be FR, thats what this is saying, Thats the way I interpret it anyhow.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 04, 2009 2:25 am 
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From 2112-2007:

This standard shall not apply to protection from electrical flashes,...

Which version of ASTM F1506 are you quoting from, msaner?


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 14, 2009 6:43 am 
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msaner@workrite.com wrote:
It is Workrite's policy to use non-FR thread to apply non-FR tags so that they will fall off if ignited. It is true that FR tags are available but they are quite expensive.


I think Workrite is a good company. Can you help the forum understand whether or not you have ever tested this theory on garments "as sold"? MSANER, have you been to Kinectrics lab in Toronto since ASTM F2621 has been available? Have you performed any tests on your products as sold? What did you record as your after flame considering the use of non-FR thread, tags and/or patches? What about the observation notes on secondary ignition from the non-FR findings which will continue to burn and burn, especially if you employ FR treated fabrics in your garment construction?

Mixing non-FR thread into a garments construction is a recipe for disaster. Some garment manufacturer's who specialize in arc rated PPE solutions ban any and ALL non-FR thread from their factory *just in case* the thread was mistakenly used in the garment's construction. I feel that this non-FR thread policy is the safest approach and by far the most conservative.

Only one fabric manufacturer to the best of my knowledge offers an FR identification tag. This tag is not intended to identify the HRC or Arc Rating, but rather their brand identity. My philosophy is to NOT use tags at all. Why not take a more conservative approach if you can avoid the use of any non-FR material? What is the harm in using Nomex thread?


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2009 2:11 am 
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F1506 Standard and logos

stevenal wrote:
From 2112-2007:

This standard shall not apply to protection from electrical flashes,...

Which version of ASTM F1506 are you quoting from, msaner?



It has been in all the versions since I think 2000.

Mark and I are on the F1506 committee. What I have found in testing is embroidery is tough to ignite. Some of the polyester heat sealed will ignite but pretty far past the arc rating of the shirt and they still burn in a very limited area. I like the embroidery better from an arc or flash fire perspective. You can get Nomex thread for embroidery if you request it. Costs a little more.


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