A new research, development and manufacturing center in Canada is being set up to try to make the workplace safer. Olds College is joining Alberta Garment Manufacturing to establish what is believed to be Western Canada’s first apparel research and development facility. When it opens in 2015, the facility will test, design and manufacture protective clothing for the energy and construction industries as well as for the Canadian forces.
The center will design its own product lines and test designs from other companies. An example would be tests on cold-weather gear developed by the Canadian military. Canada is known as a cold country. It doesn’t have many facilities that can test their cold ratings of products. Now it will have.
There is a need for testing products and developing standards for steam because steam processing is a dangerous occupation. Right now there is no clothing that protects the worker from steam accidents. So the project will work on development of flame retardant clothes, especially clothing for steam exposure, that is, hot liquid exposure.
The new facility will complement the Fashion Marketing and Apparel Technology programs offered by Olds College and will be connected to the Alberta Garment Manufacturing facility in northeast Calgary.