From: 8524828hau**At_Symbol_Here**COMCAST.NET
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Liquid proof flame retardant lab coats
Date: April 18, 2012 9:38:41 AM EDT
Reply-To: DCHAS-L <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU>
Message-ID: <001801cd1d04$bed865e0$3c8931a0$**At_Symbol_Here**>

Just an observation:
This discussion has elevated to the level for which it may be appropriate to consider the "turn-out" protective clothing that fire fighters wear.  However, if a lab worker needed to routinely wear "turn-out" protection, its seems that either (a) the work is greater than laboratory scale (more suitable to containment typical of pilot plant scale),  or (b) the hazard control needs to be improved closer to the source (e.g., glovebox, procedural controls, two-person rule, portable hazard shield).

Have the discussants considered the importance of reliable (e.g., regularly tested) drench showers for both fire suppression and chemical dilution/decontamination. 

Situations requiring extraordinary PPE in a laboratory work environment may include connection/disconnection of piping for pyrophoric gases -- with appropriate pre-operational purging with inert gas to decrease the hazard.

I am aware of a principal investigator who insisted that hands-on research personnel wear Nomex clothing when making connections of hydrogen gas, even though the procedure included appropriate purging and the valving system was in a ventilated box.

I am aware that researchers using large quantities of corrosive acid (HF + HNO3 + H3PO4) had special synthetic overalls that would prevent penetration of the acid.  Their emergency plan included readily available showers and calcium gluconate spray for the HF hazard.

David Haugen, retired.

From: "Zack Mansdorf" <mansdorfz**At_Symbol_Here**BELLSOUTH.NET>
Sent: Tuesday, April 17, 2012 8:44:06 PM
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Liquid proof flame retardant lab coats



There are flame retardant materials that provide flash protection, but not thermal insulation (e.g., FR cotton).  Thermal insulation is a measure, in part, of thickness.  Chemical resistance is another measure.  As far as I know, there is no single material that will provide thermal resistance (thermal protection), chemical protection/resistance and flame resistance..  ASTM F23 is the committee that develops test methods to measure these properties as well as some guides to selection, care and maintenance.  Companies that produce the products, such as DuPont for Nomex, will also provide technical assistance.


Bottom line is the scenario that you think is the one you need protection against.  From there, you can develop the best combination of materials.  You can contact ASTM F23 or one of the manufacturers of protective clothing for more information.



S.Z. Mansdorf, Ph.D., CIH, CSP, QEP

7184 Via Palomar

Boca Raton, FL  33433

Mobile:  561-212-7288



From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:dchas-l**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU] On Behalf Of Bruce Van Scoy
Sent: Tuesday, April 17, 2012 6:59 PM
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Liquid proof flame retardant lab coats



I am not aware of an acceptable standard test for determining the absorption properties of flame retardant lab coats.  Is anyone aware of one?  If the lab coat is both chemically and fire resistant, then shouldn't it have passed each individual respective chemical absorption test to not absorb the flammable liquid to contribute fuel to a fire?  The fire would be limited to the flammable liquid available on the surface of the lab coat.  Typically, I check the manufacturers testing data for chemical resistance or compatibility to resist absorption(permeation)/penetration to the contaminants of concern.  I'm not aware of any professionally recognized testing standard that simultaneously tests absorptive properties of flammable liquids with the flammable characteristics of the lab coats, wouldn=E2=80™t that be the true real-world test of a flammable resistant lab coat?  However, I would expect the costs of the testing would be exorbitant!

My opinions and thought logic only, in an effort to continuously learn and improve. 



From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:dchas-l**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU] On Behalf Of Naomi Kelly
Sent: Tuesday, April 17, 2012 12:13 PM
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Liquid proof flame retardant lab coats


Wish I did, please let me know if you get positive info on this.


On 4/13/12 2:29 PM, Russell Vernon wrote:

One of the challenges we've encountered is the liquid absorptive properties of flame retardant lab coats.

Does anyone know of a commercially available flame retardant lab coats that resists absorbing water and other solvents?


Thanks in advance,



Russell Vernon, Ph.D.


Environmental Health & Safety

University of California, Riverside

900 University Ave

Riverside, CA 92521



Direct (951) 827-5119

Admin (951) 827-5528

Fax (951) 827-5122

Naomi Kelly 
Clemson University
EHS Chemical/Lab Safety Manager
Moorman House
(864) 654-7155
(864) 650-8155

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