Hazard Level Risk Ratings

Definition of risk

As an employer, keeping your team safe on the job site is vital. And you can’t do that if you don’t provide them with the right gear. What garment CAT rating does your team require?

CAT stands for Hazard Risk Category (measured in ATPV or Arc Thermal Protection Value) and indicates the particular hazard or risk category (CAT) associated with each task performed on the job site. There are four hazardous risk categories, numbered in severity from one to four. The higher the number, the greater the danger and arc flash protection required.

CAT 1: low risk.

Equipment needed: Flame Resistant (FR) shirt and flame-resistant coveralls (1 layer).

CAT 2: moderate risk.

Equipment required: cotton underclothing, FR shirt and FR pants (1-2 layers).

CAT 3: high risk.

Equipment needed: cotton underclothing, FR shirt, FR pants, and FR coveralls (2-3 layers).

CAT 4: extreme risk.

Equipment required: cotton underclothing, FR shirt, F4 pants, and multi-layered FR flash suit (3 layers or more).

Consider the ATPV when choosing safety clothing. The value determines how much heat the fabric can withstand before failing. The higher the ARC rating value, the greater the protection. A value is determined by the amount of energy required to pass through a specific fabric with a 50 per cent probability of causing second or third-degree burns.

To determine appropriate FR clothing, perform a Hazardous Risk Assessment. HRA is a term used to describe the process by which hazards and risk factors are determined and the potential each has to cause harm to workers. Once an HRA has been performed, best practices and protocols can be put in place to eliminate the hazards or to mitigate the risk when a threat cannot be controlled, reduced or eliminated.

Many rigorous guidelines are already in place both provincially and federally governing workplace safety. Companies employing workers performing tasks in hazardous environments must always be diligent in adhering to policies and following up to ensure compliance.

Not all safety clothing is created equal, nor is every supplier able to answer your questions or make informed recommendations. When it comes to selecting high-quality, well-designed and crafted safety apparel, you need to speak with an expert. That’s why so many safety conscious companies protect their workers with clothing from UpTen FR Apparel. We make it our business to provide the best quality clothing backed by expert advice and superior customer service.


UpTen FR Apparel offers an exceptional line of comfortable, durable and versatile FR workwear including shirts, hoodies and jackets – engineered to deliver predictable protection in the most unpredictable situations. Superior protection against the harshest job site hazards. The team at UpTen FR are here to answer your questions, explain the advantages and to help you select the right gear for your situation. Call us at 905-424-4481 or visit https://uptenfr.ca/contact/ Quality FR apparel, custom-crafted and tradespeople approved.