Bristol Uniforms Ltd.
Bristol Uniforms Ltd. news
Firefighters have seen their roles change significantly in recent years, as they respond to the challenges of the modern world. Today, in addition to fire-related emergencies, fire crews attend a wide variety of other incidents including traffic accidents, medical emergencies, flooding, chemical spills, public unrest, and collapsed buildings. As a result, firefighter PPE has been steadily evolving to reflect this change, with manufacturers and designers striving to produce protective garments to suit a variety of environments and operations, and to help minimize health risks. Whether attending an incident at the roadside, at an intense fire or in extremely cold conditions, emergency responders need to maintain a comfortable body temperature and stay dry. Gore Varde fabrics RescueFlex consists of a rescue jacket and trouser based on Bristol Uniforms’ popular XFlex design They also need protection against harmful chemicals, carcinogens and pathogens, and need full range of movement to carry out the job in hand. RescueFlex is Bristol Uniforms’ range of cutting-edge technical rescue PPE, meeting the CEN standard, EN 16689:2017. Specifically developed for use in Technical Rescue and Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) operations, it is also ideal for many everyday situations faced by the modern firefighter, where lighter and more flexible clothing can be more appropriate than full structural PPE. RescueFlex consists of a rescue jacket and trouser based on Bristol Uniforms’ popular XFlex design. It incorporates two layers: a flame-retardant outer layer and a waterproof membrane, in a choice of specialist materials which offer a high level of protection against wind, water and flame. Fabric options include the new Gore Varde fabrics, which are particularly lightweight and breathable. additional physical protection Quilted padding at high risk points such as the knees and elbows provides additional physical protection, and importantly, the coat and trouser can be zipped together to maintain protection when maneuvering and crawling. RescueFlex is also tear and puncture resistant and provides protection against blood-borne pathogens – essential when attending to casualties. Crucially, RescueFlex offers a particularly high level of flexibility for excellent maneuverability in confined spaces and is lightweight to minimize heat stress. It is available in a range of colors including red, navy, orange, Hi-Viz orange and Hi-Viz yellow.
Thirty-three Fire and Rescue Services (FRS), comprising over 33,500 firefighters, are now benefiting from the Local Authority Collaborative PPE Framework. Launched three years ago in June 2017, the Framework gives UK FRSs access to high quality PPE ensembles and volume discounts through a streamlined procurement process. The Framework was set up in response to calls from government and the industry for FRSs to work together to share best practice and deliver efficiencies. It is run by Kent FRS, with PPE supplied by Bristol Uniforms, who was selected as the preferred supplier following a rigorous two-year tender process. Signing up via a purchase only or fully managed service contract, FRSs continue to reap the benefits of the Framework, which guarantees quality PPE that has been independently evaluated and tested, and can save considerable time and costs. utilize latest technology So far this year through the Framework, Bristol has delivered new PPE to seven FRSs, including Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service who opted for a Fully Managed Services Contract. Despite the Coronavirus pandemic, they were measured and received their kit on 1 June. The safety of our firefighters is of the utmost importance to us here in Oxfordshire" Chief Fire Officer Rob MacDougall said: “Bristol Uniforms uses the latest technology in firefighter clothing, and they design PPE to provide fire crews with the very best protection. The safety of our firefighters is of the utmost importance to us here in Oxfordshire. The kit is lighter in weight, breathable and offers more support for the wearer and we are proud to know we are now one of many fire and rescue services in the country to utilize this latest technology in protective clothing for our staff. Thank you to Bristol Uniforms for providing us with a first-class service.” fire and rescue service Chris Colgan, Director of Operations at Kent Fire and Rescue Service, and Chair of the NFCC PPE/Clothing Committee, said: “The National Collaborative PPE Framework is the first of its kind for the fire and rescue service, enabling borderless provision of standardized critical kit." "So far, working with the team at Bristol Uniforms, we have made significant progress in demonstrating that the sector can work as one customer. However, more can be done. The pandemic has shown us that it is not an impossible target to expect all FRS to sign up to national arrangements delivered through the National Fire Commercial Transformation Programme and we are committed to continuing to build on the success of this arrangement." benefits of joint working The selected styles combine innovative and ergonomic designs with the use of high-performance fabrics and fibers "Bristol Uniforms has done a sterling job ensuring service continuity for all FRS throughout the disruptions caused by COVID-19, working closely with the contract management team at Kent FRS on behalf of the Sector. This has been one of the greatest tests of strategic relationship and service management and I am incredibly pleased that the result has been a real proof of concept.” Roger Startin, Joint Managing Director at Bristol Uniforms said: “The demand for our cutting-edge PPE through the Collaborative Framework has been unprecedented as FRSs learn about the benefits of joint working. The Framework has significantly improved and simplified the procurement process and despite very challenging circumstances, we continue to size firefighters for their new kit, manufacture and deliver it on time and to budget.” high-performance fabrics PPE supplied by Bristol Uniforms within the Framework includes Full Structural Ensemble, a Layered Jacket, Rescue Jacket and USAR Ensemble. The selected styles combine innovative and ergonomic designs with the use of high-performance fabrics and fibers, offering maximum comfort, manoeuvrability and protection.
The national picture for the Coronavirus outbreak is evolving and changing rapidly. As a supplier of PPE and Managed Services to the Fire and Rescue Service, Bristol Uniforms qualifies as an essential service that needs to remain operating if possible. In light of this the company wants to reassure their customers of the following steps they have taken at Bristol, both to ensure that their colleagues are able to work safely and to make sure they help keep their organization running as smoothly as it can in these challenging times. Measures include: Work stations in the Factory and Service Centers have been moved to an appropriate distance from one another. High contact areas are cleaned regularly by Bristol Uniforms staff and by other contract cleaners. Where it is possible, some administration staff are working from home, others will come into work on alternate days/weeks to keep essential routines going. Anyone with the symptoms of a cough or high temperature will self-isolate for 7 days, or if someone in the same household displays these symptoms, they will immediately self-isolate for 14 days. Unnecessary travel has been limited/cancelled. Visitors/contractors coming to Bristol are asked to confirm they have not visited any countries of risk, do not have any symptoms and have not been exposed to others showing the symptoms, prior to arriving. Bristol Uniforms employees are adhering to the principles of social distancing. Movement between departments has been restricted. As a business entering its seventh decade of supply to the Fire and Rescue Service, now more than ever is a time for the company to pull together in their efforts to support their customers. While doing so, it is also a time to make sure the priority throughout all of this is the health and safety of their colleagues and their families.