Can a shirt with a metal snap or a metal zipper meet the Arc Rated Clothing standards?
The question of whether metal closures should be used on arc rated clothing is raised regularly by end users especially in relation to zippers and press studs. Hugh Hoagland from e-Hazard in the US recently posed the question “Can a shirt with a metal snap or a metal zipper meet ASTM F1506 and NFPA 70E?”. Hugh’s answer “This is a matter of opinion and there is some controversy about the issue”. So there appears to be no conclusive answer to this question so we thought we would clear up how and why Elliotts have approached this issue.
Do Elliotts use Metal Closures in the Arc Rated Clothing?
Elliotts have been manufacturing arc rated clothing for over 10 years. Based on international and local research when designing our garments, we choose not to use metal closures. There were two key factors in our decision:
The first was the requirement of NFPA 70E which was the only real modern standard at the time which had requirements for FR Clothing or what is now known as Arc Rated Clothing which states that “Conductive articles of jewellery and clothing (such as watch bands, bracelets, rings, key chains, necklaces, metalized aprons, cloth with conductive thread, metal headgear, or metal frame glasses) shall not be worn within the restricted approach boundary or where they present an electrical contact hazard with exposed energized electrical conductors or circuit parts.” The second key factor was larger electrical utility end users who were selecting to not use metal-based closures.
What Type of Closures are used in Arc Rated Clothing?
There are various types of closure systems used in Arc Rated clothing, Elliotts Arc Rated Clothing utilises various types of closure systems and does not utilise any metal-based components. Closure systems include:
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