Most probably as early as this year, both the ISO 11611 and EN ISO 11612 will be changed. The most striking change concerns the use of small emblems, logos or embroideries on the outside of the clothing, without specific requirements regarding the fire properties. However, it’s still under the condition that it should be less than 10 square centimetres. For many clothing manufacturers, this is a big improvement. There is often the request for smaller patches, for example on the breast pocket or sleeve. With the changed standards, this is now possible without testing.
For the use of larger emblems a test report, in which the burning properties are tested, is still required. Tests are carried out on an emblem attatched to the fabric. The results must meet the same strict fire resistance requirements as for the fabric.
There are still protective clothing suppliers who are not aware of the regulations and who, on request of their customers, tag their clothing with emblems, logos or embroideries. This can only be done when they stay within the 10 square centimetres, anything bigger than this requires additional testing. Because in all other cases, additional requirements are applicable and therefore the supplier enters on legal thin ice if they do not sufficiently demonstrate that the product delivered to the customer continues to meet the applicable regulations. Also, any product liability rests entirely with the supplier to the extent there is a defective product caused by the application of the logo is not sufficiently fire retardant.
Even though there is the possibility to use small labels, without additional testing, there is still the underlying problem of the fire behavior of emblems. Often the labels, which are applied to various fire retardants, show unpredictable fire test results. Indirectly, this means that the risk of fire incidents remains. Therefore it is advisable that manufacturer, reseller and customer work together to come to responsible use of emblems.