DuPont™ Nomex® Flame -Resistant Fiber Helps Fire Fighters Prevent Fire Injuries
In 2012, India has seen over 23,000 deaths due to fire accidents alone. An electric short-circuit or a spark is often responsible for large-scale fire disasters, which are reported during summers from many cities in India.
Unnecessary accumulation of combustible or inflammable articles or hazardous material adds to the danger of fire.
One of the big states in the country, with a population of over seven crore, has faced among the worst fire accidents in India’s history. The state’s fire and rescue department has taken the responsibility of saving lives with much rigor. It is the department’s constant endeavor to prevent fire accidents by spreading fire-safety awareness and rescue people affected by floods, earthquake or other natural calamities. At the same time, the department understands that those who dedicate their lives to protecting others deserve the best protection available.
A senior official from the department says, “all personnel in the department have the onerous task of saving people in distress. It is the endeavor of the department to ensure that the delivery of services to the public reaches with least delay. The main task of the fire fighters is to save and protect life and for that, they must be safe and protected.”
The department is constantly looking to imbibe new technologies to increase the safety of their workforce. The fire fighters had traditionally been using cotton based coveralls and were aware that it was not adequate for protection from fire. A firefighter’s clothing must protect against thermal heat and hot gases & surfaces, enabling them to work close to the fire.
A part of the challenge was lack of awareness in the department about technologically advanced materials available for protection, which have reliable quality.
Considering the needs of the department, DuPont showcased its Nomex® fiber
· Nomex® is inherently flame-resistant (FR) and its FR performance cannot be washed out or worn away
· Nomex® does not melt and drip or support combustion in the air
· When Nomex® is exposed to fire, it carbonizes and thickens, and remains supple and flexible until it cools.
Nomex® helps minimize break-open and maintains a stable, inert barrier between the fire and skin, protecting the wearer from direct exposure.
DuPont worked with its partner, System 5S, to develop customized Turn Out Gears (TOGs) made of DuPont™ Nomex®. System 5S developed multi-layer gear for the fire fighters that was re-engineered to enhance the performance. The moisture and thermal liner of Nomex® can provide water repellence and thermal protection. Moreover, it is light weight adding comfort for the wearer.
According to Mr. Sudhir Takker. of System 5S, “Apart from protection, a safety gear has to offer comfort and right fit. DuPont™ Nomex® clothing is perfect mix of protection and comfort. It is lightweight, soft and breathable, which enhance comfort.”
“We firmly believe that if advanced personal protective material prevents one serious injury, it has more than paid for itself”, says a department official.
Firefighters around the world choose garments made of Nomex® for its thermal protection, durability and cost efficiency.