Foundries can be dangerous places, but they are not uniformly dangerous places. Workers are at greater risk when pouring molten metal than when walking in quiet areas, and safety regulations explain this by requiring more layers of protection. Foundry protective clothing can be divided into two categories: primary protective clothing and secondary protective clothing.
primary protective clothing
Primary protective clothing is used for certain hazardous tasks, such as charging, taping, pouring molten metal, and is later removed. It is this outer layer of the personal protective equipment system that is used as the first line of defense against hazards such as molten metal splashes.
You can combine different garments to create this layer: jackets, coats, hoods, full-body suits, pants, coveralls, leggings, overshoes, spats. Not all tasks require the same amount of coverage, and many combinations can be used for the right level of protection.
Materials vary depending on what hazard the primary protective suit is designed for. Many are ‘aluminized’, in which the base fabric is finished with an aluminized coating. These types are most useful in environments with serious thermal threats, such as fire hazards and radiant heat sources.
Secondary protective clothing
When putting on and taking off the primary protective clothing, the worker remains wearing the secondary protective clothing underneath. Everyday clothing designed for greater comfort while providing shielding between the worker and nearby hazards. If anything gets through the primary suit, the secondary suit provides an extra layer of protection and keeps the hazard away from your skin.
Secondary protective clothing is also the only protective clothing worn during typical foundry operations. They can redirect the worst heat nearby, and elements such as gloves work to prevent cuts and scrapes.
It is important that the secondary protective clothing fits snugly. When clothing is worn badly, it creates creases that trap and hold the molten metal instead of immediately sliding off. Other potential problems include pockets or flaps that can catch molten metal, or buttons that heat up near the hazard.
Two types of secondary protective clothing
There are two types of fire resistant secondary protective clothing.
1. Treated fire resistant cloth
These are created by applying flame-retardant chemicals to fabrics to form strong bonds that are difficult to wash off.
2. Unique fire resistant fabric
They are made of fibers that are naturally fire resistant so they will never wash off. Unlike treated fabrics, this resistance is permanent.
Elliotts offers a wide range of both primary and secondary layer protective clothing. Each of our products is designed to the highest standards and there is something for everyone.