Since 2010, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration has required oil and gas industry workers to wear protective clothing while they are on the job. Oil and gas workers must deal with fire hazards daily, which is why OSHA requires them to wear fire-resistant or flame retardant clothing.
If you work in this industry and aren’t sure what you need to wear, don’t worry. Here is your guide on FR clothing requirements for oil and gas workers.
When To Wear FR Clothing
OSHA requires oil and gas workers to wear personal protective equipment (PPE) at specific points during production. Oilfield workers need to wear FR gear when drilling, extracting oil and gas, servicing any active wells, and any other point during active production.
Even when the risk of a flash fire is low, workers should still wear FR pants and shirts so they’re protected. Wearing FR clothing all the time is the best way to stay protected, but OSHA mandates that you wear it during these steps of the oil production process.
How To Take Care of Your FR Clothing
You must clean FR clothing differently than traditional laundry. First, you must steer clear of fabric softeners because they leave a flammable coating on FR materials. Bleach is another chemical to avoid because it degrades the fire resistance of the clothes.
Fatty or bar soaps leave behind a residue that causes FR materials to lose their functionality. The most effective way to wash FR clothing is with a liquid detergent and hot or warm water.
Inspect your clothes regularly because FR gear won’t last forever. Routinely replacing your clothes will ensure that you always have protective clothing for work.
Implement an FR Clothing Program Where You Work
OSHA requires employers to provide PPE to employees so they don’t put themselves at risk when they’re on the job. If your company doesn’t have an FR clothing program, ask management to consider providing a stipend or providing employees with FR clothing.
Overall, oil and gas workers face many safety risks while they’re on the job. Thankfully, now that you know the FR clothing requirements for oil and gas workers, you can wear the right gear to protect yourself and others.