Just before Christmas a representative from DRIFIRE Fire Retardant Wear, asked me if I would be interested in reviewing their products. Not that I use fire retardant wear or have worn such products, but I am always happy to review anything dealing with the military.
When I was in the Air Force, a hundred years ago, (Just kiddin’), we didn’t have such clothing. The only FR type stuff, was what our Fireman wore. Today however, is a whole new ballgame. Although one of my sons was in the Marine Corps, I had no idea, that this type of clothing was being worn by our military men or women. More on that, in a bit.
What is DRIFIRE?
The name DRIFIRE tells most of the story, but there is more. Besides being fire resistant, the material is lightweight, breathable and wicks away moisture, keeping the body dry. It protects against flame, arc-flash, and other potential dangers. A really important aspect of DRIFIRES garment is that the safety built into the material, will never wash or wear away. That’s called lifetime durability folks!
Hand in hand with the military, I found that this type of military clothing, has many civilian applications as well. Electrical, Utilities, Fire, Law Enforcement and the Oil and Gas Industries, all use this clothing.
I had a grandfather, who ran the first line crew in Los Angeles and worked in the utilities industry for over 30 years. You can bet that his crews would have loved to have something lightweight and breathable to wear, instead of long sleeve shirts and heavy coveralls, in the heat of an L.A. summer.
An uncle, who also worked for L.A. Power and Light, was called out, when the Watts Riots of L.A. broke out in 1965. He was sent in to restore power to lines that had been torn down I recall stories of how hot and dangerous it was, as cars and buildings burned around them. They stripped down to their bare chests as the heat was so intense. One can only imagine the hazards of working next to high power lines and burning embers, with nothing but bare skin exposed. DRIFIRE clothing would have been a godsend to those brave men.
Today’s military, needs extra protection, from such things as extreme heat, and those dangerous road side bombs. How about DOD personnel who regularly round up and disarm explosives, or the transportation guys that haul fuel, bombs or other dangerous materials.
DRIFIRE has the best in flame retardant clothing. T-shirts, boxers, combat apparel and even flight suits! Though made for the harsh work environment of military personal, they are equally suited to PT wear, when off duty.
No Melt, No Drip
This is a really important fact! All of DRIFIRES garments are no-melt, no drip. What does that mean? If you’ve ever had a piece of clothing catch on fire, ( I have several times over my lifetime), you know that there are two things you don’t want to happen. Number one, you don’t want the material to melt to your skin. Number two, you don’t want the material to burn, melt then drip on other parts of your body. DRIFIRES material works with you, not against you!
DRIFIRE, was kind enough to send me a shirt to try. I’m old and retired now, so was looking for someone better engaged in a work environment. I didn’t have to look far. My oldest son John, is in the construction industry and is also an avid hunter. (I can see the light weight and ability to wick moisture, as an excellent undergarment for hunting). I had my guinea pig!
I gave the shirt to him. He does a lot of new construction and remodeling work. He works in harsh environments from cold winters to hot summers. He works in confined areas, from crawl spaces to attics and in between. Winter months, are especially hazardous. One time a space heater malfunctioned and caught fire, as they did finish work inside. Luckily they were able to put the fire out.
I recall one time, when a closed, one gallon can with a bit of paint thinner was left in a hot trailer. It exploded, dousing my son with the contents. He was OK, but if their had been an ignition source around, he would have been seriously burnt.
John loves the shirt, and I expect him at some point before hunting season, to buy the pants that go along with it! We we both amazed at how lightweight the garment was. If one has to wear heavy clothing, the ideal would be to wear the lightest undergarments as possible. He also loves the high neck style. After he wore the shirt for a bit, he quickly noted how cool it was. After all, it wicks moisture and allows the materiel to breathe. He says it would be a great undergarment or worn just as tee during the summer.
That’s DRIFIRE in a nutshell. Lightweight, wicks moisture, breathable, cool, and fire resistant. And talk about a life time guarantee-The built in safety of the clothing, will never wash or wear out, for the lifetime of the garment!
Review by Sgt. Mac and son John