Advanced materials producer DuPont has set up a research facility for personal protective equipment at its European technical Centre in Switzerland. It will test fabric samples and garments at exposures up to 20kA in one second bursts for 240V and 480V single and three-phase generated short circuits.
Inbuilt sensors can predict whether there will be second degree burns.
The Health and Safety Executive does not keep figures on accidents involving serious second and third degree electrical burns.
But the problem is serious enough to warrant attention from European safety body Cenelec, which publishes a draft standard in September. It covers protective clothing design and performance.