Lincolnshire was the first fire service to roll out Hainsworth TITAN 1220 as part of the Central PPE and Clothing Contract (CPCC).
The CPCC replaced the previous programme, Integrated Clothing Project (ICP), and aims to ensure firefighters are able to take advantage of best-in-class products and services.
Lincolnshire is an impressive and slightly unusual operation compared to other services across the UK. There are 38 fire stations, of which 29 are solely retained, housing approximately 750 firefighters.
Ensuring their firefighters, both full-time and retained, are able to access the very best protective garments is taken very seriously by management.
The service typically works on an eight-year life cycle for renewing its kit and it was becoming apparent that repair costs were getting ever more expensive.
The procurement team at Lincolnshire, led by Contracts Manager Julia Skinner, were therefore able to use the CPCC’s Technical Refresh programme to justify the investment in its new kit.
Bristol Uniforms has the responsibility for supplying the wide range of PPE and non-PPE clothing for the CPCC.
More than 1,800 sets of garments have been rolled out, using a TITAN 1260 outer fabric, which is woven in a combination of high performance fibres in a natural black gold colour, and incorporate a Gore CROSSTECH® Fire Blocker moisture barrier with a Hainsworth ECO-DRY Active lining.
Lincolnshire has taken the kit as part of Bristol’s Managed Services programme which enables the service to depend on the manufacturer to provide lifetime garment care rather than taking responsibility for this in-house.
Julia Skinner, Contracts Manager at Lincolnshire, says:
“The process of moving to the new kit was very smooth. We were already with Bristol which made it easier, but we were keen to ensure that the garments were introduced as quickly as possible, within a three to four week period, to ensure that all our fire crews were dressed the same.”
Julia added: “The response in the three months since the new kit was introduced has been excellent. They seem to be very happy. Firefighters will always tell you if there is a problem!”
Bob Over, Crew Manager at Lincolnshire, said: “Our new garments definitely feel lighter. The jackets are better fitted and give us greater movement and flexibility.
“The ECO-DRY Active lining is a fantastic innovation to the garment, helping to control sweating and take up moisture before the garment starts to feel wet.
“The early indications are that the new kit keeps us cooler when working for long periods of time at high intensity. During the course of a year, we will face a wide range of incidents, from road traffic collisions to wildfires during the summer months.”