FR Clothing Requirements for Oil and Gas Workers

FR clothing for oil and gas workers has to meet rigorous standards and regulations to offer maximum protection from industry hazards, like flash fire, arc flashes, and heat, to ensure FR clothing safety compliance. The Canadian Labour Code requires employers to “...ensure that the health and safety at work of every person employed by the employer is protected” (Section 124). In the oil and gas industry, you can mitigate flash fire, arc flash, and heat hazards with appropriate FR clothing that meets or exceeds standardized requirements.

So what are the requirements for oil and gas FR clothing? The Canadian General Standards Board (CGSB) and Canada Standards Association (CSA) dictate the rules and standards for FR clothing suitable for oil and gas workers. These include garments that are tested to withstand controlled flames, demonstrate adequate heat resistance and protection and/or arc flash protection, display an arc rating, and limit predicted burns to 40% in flash fire simulations.

Let’s take a closer look at the requirements FR clothing for oil and gas workers should meet to ensure you're on top of the standards for oil and gas protective clothing.

Oil and Gas FR Clothing Standards and Requirements

Compliant apparel for oil and gas workers is made with durable FR fabrics with special properties that limit exposure to extreme heat, flames, and dangerous arc flashes. Here are the standards employers should follow for worker safety and compliance.

Flash Fire and Heat

CGSB 155.20 dictates the rules employers must ensure workers (including oil and gas) follow for compliance and protection. It’s very similar to NFPA 2112 in the U.S. This is the flash fire protection standard that requires workwear to pass a battery of tests, including:

  • Vertical flammability: Performance when suspended over a controlled flame
  • TPP, or thermal protective performance: Thermal insulation in the presence of flames and heat
  • Durability: Protection lasts through multiple laundering cycles
  • Limited burn: Predicted body burn no more than 40% in 3-second flash fire simulations

Look for FR clothing that displays compliance with CGSB 155.20 and/or NFPA 2112 from a reputable manufacturer like MWG Apparel to ensure your workers are properly outfitted and in compliance.

Arc Flash

Arc-rated clothing must meet all ASTM F1506 requirements as outlined in CSA Z462 for workers with potential incident energy exposure above 1.2cal/cm2 (enough to cause a 2nd-degree burn). These include performance minimums in breaking load, tear resistance, and vertical flammability, plus:

  • Arc-rated fabrics: Rated in either ATPV (Arc Thermal Performance Value) or Ebt (Energy to Breakopen Threshold)
  • Durability: Fabric integrity holds up through multiple laundering cycles
  • Construction: Garments meet standards, like the use of FR thread, and don’t contain metal pieces positioned against the skin
  • Labeling: Arc rating in ATPV or Ebt, tracking code, and fabric ID are displayed on the garment

Additionally, arc-rated FR clothing must protect workers from potential incident energy exposure for their specific working environment and equipment. The PPE category (CAT) method is used to determine the required minimum arc rating for FR workwear in oil and gas jobs. Document the potential incident energy exposure for workers in cal/cm2 (based on worker face/chest distance from potential arc source) to determine which CAT is required. FR clothing for oil and gas workers should typically offer CAT 2 protection at a minimum:

  • CAT 1: 4 cal/cm2
  • CAT 2: 8 cal/cm2
  • CAT 3: 25 cal/cm2
  • CAT 4: 40 cal/cm2

It can be challenging when it comes to finding durable, compliant FR clothing that is genuinely compliant with these rules. Some manufacturers base their claims on a single test that doesn’t accurately indicate performance in hazardous situations that oil and gas workers face.

When you shop with a trusted company like MWG Apparel, you’ll have peace of mind knowing every garment offers superior construction and performance, demonstrated durability, and is third-party tested by Aitex for compliance. Safety is our top priority and we rigorously test our proprietary fabrics, garments, and multiple layering combinations to ensure our collections meet and exceed standards and regulations.

At MWG Apparel, our FR clothing is tailored to meet the demanding needs of the oil and gas industries. Browse our collection now or contact us for expert guidance on finding the right clothing to meet your compliance standards.
Back to blog