Effective uniform washing can reduce firefighters’ exposure to harmful toxins

In an effort to reduce the build-up of harmful and potentially carcinogenic toxins within a firefighter’s uniform, Electrolux Professional is highlighting the importance of thorough and effective cleaning.

Research has shown that firefighters are at a higher risk of developing and dying from cancer than the general population, which is why their uniforms are specifically designed to trap harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) inside the layers of the fabric. This helps to ensure toxins are kept away from the skin, but means that thorough cleaning of the garments is necessary to maximise this benefit.

Electrolux Professional performed lab tests compliant with Oeko-Tex, EU, and German GS Mark standards, and found that its premium barrier washer solution offers significantly better protection than standard washing.

Mick Christian, regional training and development manager at Electrolux Professional, comments: “When we started working the Healthy Firefighters programme six years ago, we aimed to develop a solution that would address some of the lesser known risks associated with firefighting. The results have been promising, with our barrier washers reducing contaminants in uniforms to a much greater degree than standard washing.”

The safety-critical role of a firefighter’s uniform means that maintenance regimes have to be rigorous, and tailored to the unique demands of the profession. Cleaning is an integral part of this, and taking every possible step to reduce exposure to harmful toxins should be a top priority.

Christian concludes: “The optimal way to do this is to run the uniforms thorough a high-performance barrier washer after every use. This will ensure that uniforms – a key component in firefighter health and safety – continue to function as they should do.”

Electrolux Professional’s Line 6000 Evolution barrier washer

In an effort to reduce the build-up of harmful and potentially carcinogenic toxins within a firefighter’s uniform, Electrolux Professional is highlighting the importance of thorough and effective cleaning.

Research has shown that firefighters are at a higher risk of developing and dying from cancer than the general population, which is why their uniforms are specifically designed to trap harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) inside the layers of the fabric. This helps to ensure toxins are kept away from the skin, but means that thorough cleaning of the garments is necessary to maximise this benefit.

Electrolux Professional performed lab tests compliant with Oeko-Tex, EU, and German GS Mark standards, and found that its premium barrier washer solution offers significantly better protection than standard washing.

Mick Christian, regional training and development manager at Electrolux Professional, comments: “When we started working the Healthy Firefighters programme six years ago, we aimed to develop a solution that would address some of the lesser known risks associated with firefighting. The results have been promising, with our barrier washers reducing contaminants in uniforms to a much greater degree than standard washing.”

The safety-critical role of a firefighter’s uniform means that maintenance regimes have to be rigorous, and tailored to the unique demands of the profession. Cleaning is an integral part of this, and taking every possible step to reduce exposure to harmful toxins should be a top priority.

Christian concludes: “The optimal way to do this is to run the uniforms thorough a high-performance barrier washer after every use. This will ensure that uniforms – a key component in firefighter health and safety – continue to function as they should do.”

Electrolux Professional’s Line 6000 Evolution barrier washer

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