Impact Racing and SFI at it again Contrary to the assertions of SFI, there is no safety risk to users of Impact Racing suits bearing SFI 3.2A/5 certification tags. The issue that has been created by SFI involves thread used in Impact’s fire suits. The error in the assessment of SFI is revealed by its assertion that thread used by Impact Racing “melts away in a fire”. According to the analysis presented by SFI “this causes the fabric to come apart since there is no longer thread to hold the suit together”. This conclusion demonstrates the lack of understanding on the part of SFI as to what causes a fire suit to work and what causes a fire suit to be safe.
The thread about which SFI complains is not intended to “hold the suit together”. The fabric does not “come apart” in a fire. In a fire, the layers of fabric must be allowed to expand because it is expansion that creates the layer of air that insulates a racer from fire. Impact Racing understands the necessity of this process in fire suit construction. SFI does not.
SFI has been aware of the thread used by Impact Racing since January 14, 2009. Rather than acknowledge that SFI’s specification diminishes fire suit safety and changing the specification to enhance fire suit safety, SFI has, without foundation, accused Impact Racing of providing samples of a certain type to get SFI certification and then changing the lay-up for manufacturing. Impact Racing manufactures fire suits knowing that lives are at stake. Impact Racing fire suits are safe independent of SFI standards.
SFI has taken credit for the avoidance of burns or other injuries to users of Impact Racing products. According to SFI the absence of burns or other injuries to due “to the policing of Impact products by SFI”. The absence of burns or other injuries to users of Impact Racing products is a result of attention to design and commitment to safety throughout the Impact Racing product line. What SFI has deemed to be a “pattern of non-compliance” by Impact Racing is a dispute over standards that SFI refuses to change even under circumstances when change is in the best interest of the user of the product.
Impact Racing is engaged in discussions with SFI about its products, SFI standards, and SFI testing procedures. Impact Racing is committed to resolving these issues with SFI if it can be done without compromising the benchmarks Impact Racing has established to assure product safety. Impact Racing Press Release
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