Since April 2015, the TR 16 832 is available. This Technical Report was developed to meet the demand for recommendations regarding the selection, use, care and maintenance of personal protective equipment to prevent electrostatic hazards in hazardous areas (explosion).
A closer examination of this technical report has shown that the usual standards on personal protective equipment are not adequate in all cases for use in an ATEX environment. For example, for protective clothing there are additional requirements in case of use of non-anti-static components and of electrical insulated conductive parts. The requirements in terms of dimensions and surface of thin insulating materials such as reflective strips, emblems etc. are subject to the ATEX zone and explosion group in which the PPE is used.
Next to that, uncovered conductive components such as buttons and zippers must be earthed unless it can be demonstrated that the capacitance of these components are below a certain limit. For gloves and protective footwear applies a similar approach that goes further than stated in the relevant product standards for these PPE.
For companies were an explosive atmosphere might occur, there is already the obligation to apply the ATEX 137 Directive in their health and safety system. With the publication of the TR 16 832 such companies are given the opportunity to specify better requirements for personal protective equipment that are used in their ATEX environments.
Manufacturers of PPE are not obliged to incorporate the requirements of the TR 16 832 in the design of their products. With the current product standards they fulfil the obligations under the PPE Directive 89/686 /EC. Still, it is expected that PPE manufacturers are going to meet the requirements stipulated in this Technical Report increasingly.
TR 16 382 can be purchased through your national standardization institute.