While design and manufacturing standards play a role in protective clothing, it is the fabric used in making the garments that is key to the safety of the wearer.
South Africa’s Gelvenor Textiles (Stand N3-110) is Firefighter wearing a Gelvenor flame-retardant suit renowned for pushing the boundaries of fabric and textile manufacturing.
‘‘As the first South African company to produce an inherently flame-retardant fabric, we are now an industry leader,’’ said Dicky Coetzee, chief executive. ‘‘Gelvenor combines our expertise gained from different textile technologies to improve on existing fabrics and develop new solutions to be cost-effective yet providing increased protection and durability.’’
Besides the company’s fire-retardant fabrics, it also offers medical and technical workwear fabrics, and military and ballistic fabrics. Gelvenor Textiles is a preferred weaver of Para-Aramid yarns, used in the manufacture of hard and soft ballistic protective fabrics and a ballistic nylon that is used in environments where fragmentation is a risk.
Fabrics such as the flame-retardant range, which need to be certified to EN/ NFPA standards, are sent to accredited testing facilities in the UK and Spain to ensure independent validation at the required levels.
Gelvenor’s military fabrics are available in various shade options and can be camouflage printed, coated or uncoated. Its fabrics are used by armed forces around the world for tenting, uniforms, backpacks, ponchos, carry and sleeping bags, and aeronautical canopies.
The company is a member of the South African Technical Textiles Cluster.