KERMEL is a leading European solution-provider of textile innovations made from its heat and flame-resistant fibres − yarns, fabrics, knits, FR protective clothing are adapted to the specific needs of the end-users.

The company is banking on the results of a major research and innovation drive. Thanks to the filing of a large number of brands and patents, KERMEL is a key player in the safety at work market.

Fire suits for fire-fighters, together with protective coveralls for public order squads, police, military and industrial uses are some of the most popular applications chosen for total protection.

In parallel with these developments, KERMEL is continuing its diversification in technical applications such as hot gas filtration, electrical insulation and, more recently, in the manufacture of underwear for high-speed sports with its SKEED® brand.

With around 100 employees, KERMEL is certified ISO 9001 v.2008 for quality, OHSAS 18001 for safety, and OEKOTEX Standard 100-labelled for health. The company is in the process of getting the environmental certification.

KERMEL has launched new solutions offering protection against heat and flames:

  • KERMEL® PROJECT Buckler, the true "no breakopen" fabric: it was developed to ensure a continued professional-looking aspect with little to no shrinkage, even after 30 industrial wash/dry cycles.
  • New wildland concepts, compliant with EN 15614: lightweight, supple fabrics encompassing the benefits of high-level tear strength and air permeability, and extra tough and durable products in an optimised weave to resist puncture and snagging.
  • High-visibility Kermel FULL OPTION fabrics for high-risk situations, all inherently non-flammable but with chemical, electric arc, static, welding and UV protection. This is a giant leap forward in technology, combining high-visibility colours (ISO 20471) with inherent non-flammability (EN ISO 11612).
  • Knits for hoods
  • KERMEL also has in place a sustainable development project whereby old garments no longer in service can be collected and recycled for use in other areas where heat and flame are a risk.

The KERMEL PROJECT Buckler solution for emergency service response clothing

Everyone is aware of the high protection levels required by the modern day fire-fighter and many suppliers including KERMEL have a solution to fit the needs of the end user. The question is 1do we do enough to help the after sales effect?’

What is in place to protect the budget costs of the different fire-fighter organisations and what about looking at any impact we have on the environment regarding sustainable development?

At KERMEL we treat all aspects very seriously. We aim to ensure that we not only maximise the wearer comfort with low heat impact on the human body but we also want to make sure that the cost of ownership to the brigade is as cost effective as possible.

How is this possible?

The newest product to be launched is the true ‘no breakopen’ KERMEL PROJECT Buckler fabric. This fabric was developed to ensure a continued professional-looking aspect with little to no shrinkage even after 30 industrial wash/dry cycles. Not only is there a benefit with initial lower cost but the lifetime of the garment is extended to reduce owner costs.

New wildland concepts

Confusion still exists regarding the perfect garment requirements of a fire-fighter responding to a wildland fire. It is clear that the product should be made from a bright colour such as red, orange or yellow to ensure that in the event of a problem, the wearer can easily be spotted from the air and rescued if necessary − but what about the fabric weight?

Several brigades still use their turnout gear but this is far from ideal as this garment is too heavy due to the layering system and was developed for large-scale fire response. In a wildland fire the wearer can be in their personal protective equipment (PPE) for more than eight hours and as such needs a lighter-weight garment to protect against the possible effect of heat stress.

KERMEL already has several excellent solutions to this problem such as the Kermel KVT and Kermel A90 but we continue to innovate with new research concepts. These standard products have such high performance that they are already used in high-risk environments. The Kermel KVT is the solution of choice for riot police and the A90 is used in FF outer shells and also USAR garments.

KERMEL leading the way in sustainable development

As a leader in the safety and environmental sectors, KERMEL does business under a management system that reflects the company’s drive to constantly satisfy its customers with its products, to respect the environment, and to preserve health and safety.

KERMEL’s objective is to offer an extra service to end users, setting up a branch to collect and recycle end-of-life fire protective clothing.

For all of its sustainable development work, KERMEL was awarded first prize in the 2012 Alsace Innovation Sustainable Development competition for the greater Colmar region.

By the end of September 2013, KERMEL had equipped over two-thirds of all French fire departments with the required information/equipment for the collection of end-of-life fire-fighting clothes.

New products using recycled Kermel fibers are now under development for a range of applications in such diverse fields as textiles, transport and construction.