I occasionally hear the term “flash fire rated” being used for FR garments. If I were to be asked “what does flash fire rated mean?” – I would say there is no specific garment “rating” for flash fire hazards. For a garment to be considered suitable for a flash fire exposure, it is generally accepted that the garment should meet all the requirements of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standard NFPA 2112. This standard has a number of fabric performance requirements, relative to thermal exposure, including testing for flammability, heat transfer performance, heat resistance, thermal shrinkage, and estimated body burn percentage, using the flash fire manikin test. Plus there are performance requirements for other components used in a garment.
There is NO specific rating for garments meeting NFPA 2112. It is a variety of minimum performance requirements that the fabric, components, and garment either pass or fail. The standard also requires that a qualified independent agency certify that the product meets these minimums.
In addition, the standard requires that both the fabric and garment manufacturer have documented quality control processes in place that are audited on a regular basis by the outside agency.
The other variation of this type of reference is “the fabric meets the requirements of NFPA 2112”. Although this is important, the performance of the fabric is only one part of the standards requirements. As I mentioned above, there are other components that have requirements and the manufacturers themselves also need to meet certain requirements.
So the real term to look for is “certified to NFPA 2112 by UL” or some other qualified agency. This assures the wearer that the entire garment and it’s components have been evaluated to, and met, the requirements of NFPA 2112, and a third party agency did the evaluation and testing, and they will audit the manufacturers future production.
Workrite FR, Dickies FR and Walls FR have a large number of coveralls, shirts, pants, and jackets that are UL certified to NFPA 2112. Check our website or new mobile app for more details www.workrite.com