Why we no longer manufacture Flame Resistant Polyester

OccuNomix is committed to setting the highest standards for safety and quality. With the recent release of the ANSI/ISEA 107-2010 standard, products must now pass certain mandatory tests to be considered Flame Resistant (FR).

No treated polyester fabric available on the market meets the required FR tests. In fact, treated polyester may melt and drip when exposed to flame. In addition, OSHA has forbidden polyester in work clothing exposed to electric arc for almost 15 years. As a result, OccuNomix no longer manufactures any polyester-based FR products.

The video below depicts 2 vests in a simulated arc situation. Vest on the left is a modacrylic flame resistant vest. Vest on the right is a 100% Polyester treated "FR". As you can see, the vest continues to burn, melt and drip long after the flash. Note the flame burning next to the mannequin head. Both mannequins are wearing flame resistant undergarments. Typically, an individual in a polyester treated garment would not wear a true flame resistant undergarment. This incident would have exposed the wearer to burns - or worse.

OccuNomix FRP products are sewn with flame resistant thread (Nomex® or Kevlar®) and most contain Nomex® zippers. FRP products contain either 25-50 wash FR cotton, modacrylic or brand names you can trust including Banox®, Proban®, Indura® and Nomex®.

We encourage you to remember the following when considering Flame Resistant products:

Check that all garment components and layers (including interior layers of winter liners) that may be exposed to flame are truly flame resistant.

Verify that the product has been tested to an appropriate apparel test, and note:

  • NFPA 701 is often misused, especially in vests and rainwear. This standard is not to be utilized in clothing. It is a standard for testing curtains.
  • ASTM D6413 is not a standard, but rather, a test method and does not offer pass/fail criteria and therefore is only used as a part of a full-scale specification. D6413 was never intended to be used as a standalone test for flame resistant clothing.
  • Choose the proper standard for FR clothing, which includes NFPA 2112, ASTM F1506, NFPA 1971, and NFPA 1975 among others (ANSI 107 and CSA Z96 both contain lists of the appropriate standards).