Proud to Protect Canada – Episode 11: Can a Canadian Company Buy AR / FR Clothing from an American Company?

As Tyndale extends our managed arc-rated and flame resistant (AR / FR) clothing programs into Canada, we invite you to follow along in our Proud to Protect Canada series. While many of the topics in this series contain Canadian-specific content, there are some topics that are relevant on both sides of the border. We hope you enjoy “meeting” our Canada Team, exploring engaging and relevant content, while learning about our unique solution and the benefits it provides to companies and wearers alike.

If you’ve been following along in our Proud to Protect Canada series, you’ve heard our resident experts talk through some fundamental topics like – why wear arc-rated and flame resistant (AR/FR) clothing, what are arc flash hazards and related standards, what are flash fire hazards and related standards, and how Canadian standards compare to their US counterpart. We also heard from our Canada Technical Advisor Sara Olsen as she reviewed some in-depth, technical topics like how standards come to fruition in Canada, the jurisdictional regulations for high-visibility apparel and AR/FR clothing, and labeling requirements in Canada.

Understanding these topics is key to ensuring your company has the information it needs to effectively source AR / FR clothing that meets your specific requirements to keep your workers safe. Choosing a supplier is the next important step in the process, and if you’re wondering if a Canadian company can buy PPE from an American supplier, Tyndale’s VP of Corporate Strategy & Technical, Scott Margolin, and Canada Sales Director, Paul Castelli and here to provide an answer:

As Paul states, the answer to Can a Canadian company buy AR / FR from an American company is unequivocally, yes. Products and services can be sourced from an American company and here’s why:

For Arc Flash Hazards:

  • Canadian standard, CSA Z462 and American standard NFPA 70E are both predicated on ASTM 1506, the Standard Performance Specification for Textile Material for Wearing Apparel for Use by Electrical Workers Exposed to Momentary Electric Arc and Related Thermal Hazards, for typical workwear.
  • CSA Z462 and NFPA 70 have the same PPE categories (except CSA Z462 recently added CAT 5).
  • PPE recommendations outlined in CSA Z462 for base layers, underlayers, and proper wear are also recommended in NFPA 70E.

For Flash Fire Hazards:

  • Canadian standard CGSB 155.20 and American standard NFPA 2112 have identical methods for both heat-resistance and thermal shrinkage testing.
  • Both standards require that fabrics not melt and drip, separate or ignite during testing, and both standards require the measurement of fabrics before and after heat exposure to determine thermal shrinkage.
  • For both CGSB 155.20 and NFPA 2112, fabrics cannot shrink more than 10% in any direction.

The bottom line is garments compliant with NFPA 70E or NFPA 2112 can be purchased by Canadian companies. Responsible American companies can source products from Canada and around the world to provide high-quality, reliable Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), including AR / FR clothing, that meets both Canadian and American standards, which overlap substantially. This ensures Canadians have access to a large selection of products which, in turn, maximizes comfort and compliance.

As long as the supplier has a firm understanding of your requirements, the key similarities and differences of the standards, and can supply garments that meet your requirements, you can feel confident in your consideration of an American company.

From the service perspective, there’s no issue with selecting an American company if they have the service requirements you’re seeking. Services can – and frankly, should – include total program management and other benefits that allow you to focus on your core responsibility of serving your customers. To learn more about Tyndale’s product and service offering for Canadian-based customers, visit TyndaleFR.ca.

Stay tuned for our next post in the series, which will cover Canadian Standards Governing Protective Footwear and Jurisdictional Requirements.

 

Series: Proud to Protect Canada

Follow along with this series to explore our educational resources for companies and workers based in Canada. You’ll meet the technical and market experts from our Canada team and find everything from the basics on the hazards, to PPE and labeling requirements, a closer look at key safety standards and the hierarchy of standards and regulations in Canada, employer responsibilities under the Canadian Labour Code, and more.

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