Level One Jacket
There have been a number of complaints to the Union regarding the fitting of these garments – particularly the sleeves being too short for a fitting size.
The Union has raised this with the Fire Service and as a consequence, further information has been sent to C.F.O. The Union still believes there remains room for confusion.
The garment is designed to be loose fitting, but not baggy. The thermal protection/insulation of the garment comes principally from a layer of air between the garment and the wearer. However, this does not justify an argument that 2-3 sizes too large is OK in order to have sleeves of the correct length.
The Union is advised that if a proper fit cannot be obtained, a special or custom made jacket can be provided specific to the individual. Up to 7cms can be added to the sleeve length.
If you believe you had no choice, in the sizing process, but to accept too large a size Level One Jacket, you are strongly recommended to ask to be re-measured for a special/custom fitted garment.
2. Washing of Level One Jacket
The Union has also had concerns expressed to it regarding the imprecise wording of the cleaning and maintenance instructions issued for the Level One Jacket. Particularly these concerns relate to:
- Washing the Jacket in Station washing machines with other clothing.
- Who decides, and on what basis “severely soiled or contaminated jackets should be sent to Total Care Centre"
In response to the Union’s concerns, the Fire Service has advised:
- The same procedure should generally be adopted as applied for the original
- Level One garments and continued for the trousers.
- Total Care Centre is however now available and it is logical to make use of it to provide an alternative cleaning regime for contaminated or severely soiled jackets.
The following guidance was provided regarding the term contaminated or severely soiled Jackets:
- A heavily soiled garment is one which, while it contains no insoluble contaminants or biological hazards, will not come clean in the normal laundering process e.g. heavily ingrained soot or carbon deposits or staining from dirty water.
- Soiled by insoluble material, e.g. diesel, engine oil, hydraulic fluid.
- Soiled by biological hazards, e.g. blood, other body fluids, decaying body matter.
If the user believes any of the above apply, they should consult their controlling officer and with his agreement, send it to Total Care for cleaning.
The Union would recommend that if such agreement is not forthcoming, the Jacket not be worn and the Union contacted.
The Union would also recommend that if in any doubt regarding the appropriate cleaning for the Level One Jacket, the Jacket be sent to Total Care for cleaning.