Why weren’t gloves a part of the flash fire standard testing until recently?

Why weren't gloves a part of the flash fire standard testing until recently?

The Difficulties of Flash Fire Glove Testing

Why weren’t gloves a part of the flash fire standard testing until recently? The answer can be found in the specifics of the testing procedure, particularly the fundamental differences between glove and garment construction. Most FR clothing is made from a single fabric type, typically cut into large swatches and assembled using flat seams.

Gloves, on the other hand, can be constructed from a wide range of materials, including synthetic and natural fibers, knits, wovens, and non-wovens, and frequently feature multiple layers of material that vary from the palm to the back of the hand.

Some gloves have no fabric swatches because they are made of engineered and natural yarns knitted directly into a glove shape on computer-controlled machines. Then they are dipped into polymer solutions. Intricacies like impact protection, knuckle panels, palm reinforcements, inner liners, etc. When compared to testing routines for clothing, gloves are exceptionally challenging.

Even though gloves were added to the testing standard in 2018, it took almost three years for a single glove to pass the NFPA 2112:2018 standard for flash fire protection.

Four safety companies pooled their resources and expertise to solve this complex but crucial hand safety problem.

DuPont Personal Protection, the leading yarn supplier, ArcWear, the testing lab, Underwriters Laboratory, the certifying body, and Ironclad Performance Wear, the glove manufacturer, worked together for months on this project, dissecting each step of the testing process and developing the appropriate methodology for testing each panel, each layer, and each thread of the glove according to each of the applicable test sections — flame resistance, heat resistance, thermal shrine.

It was a laborious process that required a lot of time and attention to detail was grounded in scientific principles and yielded excellent results. This group effort not only produced the first NFPA 2112:2018 certified glove (the Heatworx Heavy Duty FR), but it also paved the way for future certifications of gloves meeting the requirements of the NFPA 2112.

Now, for the first time, you can safeguard the hands of your employees from the perils of flash fires. The pioneering efforts of this team have ensured that, where there is currently only one glove option, there will eventually be many more. Suppose you’re responsible for implementing a flash fire protection program in the workplace. In that case, you should ensure that employees are equipped with NFPA 2112-approved clothing and gloves. Those people will be eternally grateful to you.


Veteran Owned- KPaul Industrial has been a distributor of Ironclad products and hundreds of other industrial product categories serving a wide range of industries and customers since 2006. Click here to learn more about the services offered by KPaul Industrial.


Leave a Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.