Mumbai, May 21 (IANS) The Textiles Committee, Mumbai has been approved to test and certify personal protection equipment (PPE) body coveralls used by the healthcare workers and other Covid-19 warriors, an official said here on Thursday.
This will make it the 9th laboratory to test and certify PPEs, as per an announcement by the Ministry of Textiles.
Textiles Committee Secretary and Additional Textile Commissioner Ajit Chavan said the authorities faced the humongous challenges of non-availability of domestic manufacturers of repute and delays in importing the machines from China.
Besides, there was the problem of ever-increasing prices by "opportunist companies" in China due to the demand for such testing equipment the world over, he added.
Accordingly, the Textile Committee decided to do it indigenously by conceptualising and designing the machine including the vital Synthetic Blood Penetration Testing equipment required to determine the resistance of protective clothing materials to penetration by blood and body fluids, within 45 days.
The National Accreditation Board for Testing & Calibration Laboratories audited the lab facility and approved it under three test standards.
"With this equipment and with a concrete plan to add some more as per need, we shall address not only the quantitative but also the qualitative requirements involved in the testing of Body Coveralls worn by the frontline health workers and other Covid-19 warriors," said Chavan.
Under Textiles Minister Smriti Z. Irani, the ministry has been taking steps to ensure that both quality and quantity of PPE coveralls go up to the desired levels within barely two months, thereby catapulting India as the world's second largest manufacturer of body coveralls after China.
The eight other NABL accredited labs are: South India Textiles Research Association (SITRA), Coimbatore, DRDO-INMAS, New Delhi, Heavy Vehicle Factory, Chennai, Small Arms Factory, and Ordnance Factory, both Kanpur, Ordnance Factory, Muradnagar, Ordnance Factory, Ambernath, Maharashtra and Metal & Steel Factory, Ishapore, West Bengal.