The concept of the SAFEPROTEX project lies in the development of protective uniforms, incorporating multiple protective properties and designated for rescue teams under complex risky conditions met in various types of everyday emergency operations.
Technological developments and climatic changes have both led to a large increase in the hazards to which humans are exposed. Since a garment or a uniform constitutes the safety barrier between the wearer and the source of potential injury, its characteristics will determine the degree of injury suffered in case of an accident or an emergency operation. The steady evolution of health & safety requirements to respond to new types of risks makes it necessary to develop new innovative products and to ensure their reliability. Indeed, the range of hazards and the means of combating them continue to grow and become ever more complex. Emergency teams are trained to face operations varying from small scale or wild land fires, extreme weather incidents and other complicated situations. Even in a given emergency operation, rescue teams are exposed to a variety of risks. Flood cleanup workers, for example, face variable hazards in flood waters that, in addition to obvious hazards such as water permeation, may also include sewage, household chemicals and cleaning solutions, petroleum products, hazardous industrial chemicals, pesticides, and flammable liquids.
The idea that constitutes the basis of the proposed project is to create innovative solutions to address the main limitations of existing protective garments designated for rescue teams and emergency operators. Thus, the key scope of SAFEPROTEX is to develop uniforms exhibiting the following characteristics:
- Protection against multiple hazards
- Physiological comfort and enhanced mechanical parameters
- Extended service life compared to existing protective clothing
In the frame of SAFEPROTEX, three representative risky operations will be considered and the corresponding protective uniforms will be developed as prototypes. More specifically, the project will address the following operations:
- Emergency operations under extreme weather conditions (floods, hail, etc)
- Operations under the risk of wild land fires
- First aid medical personnel potentially exposed to any type of risk