Navy going flame-resistant for sailors at sea

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — The Navy is phasing in flame-resistant clothing for every sailor who goes to sea.

The decision announced Thursday follows testing last year by the Navy Clothing and Textile Research Facility in Natick, Mass., that revealed the camouflage working uniforms most sailors wear at sea are flammable.

The nylon and cotton blend uniforms worn by most sailors aboard ships will burn and melt until they’re completely consumed.

Sailors in specific jobs, such as engine room personnel, firefighters and those in flight-related duties, are still issued flame-resistant clothing.

The test results upset some sailors and their families and they questioned why the flame-resistant uniform isn’t standard for all sailors at sea.

A working group took up the issue and proposed the phased-in clothing change for all sailors at sea, or afloat.

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