The cause of heat stress in underground mining:

Underground mining is hot, humid work. For every kilometre a miner goes underground, the air temperature increases by 10 degrees Celsius.

Air compresses and heats as it flows down the mine shaft. Hot air sits on the levels and mobile mining equipment with combustion engines also increase air temperature. These factors cause miners to sweat and put them at a higher risk of heat stress.

Mines mitigate heat stress with strategies like:

  • ventilation
  • heat-absorbing shielding or barriers
  • exposure time limits (see work/rest guidelines here)
  • proper training to recognize the signs and symptoms of heat-related illness
  • acclimatization to hot environments (critical for new hires), and
  • hydration breaks.

More mine companies are choosing technical fabrics to reduce lost workdays to heat stress and improve the safety and comfort of miner PPE.


The inherent characteristics of technical fabrics:

DragonWear® is an industrial clothing manufacturer specializing in men’s and women’s PPE for extreme temperatures, low visibility and challenging environments.

The technical fabrics they use have two critical characteristics:

1. Inherent flame and arc flash resistance.

Their technical fabric absorbs oxygen. In the event of a fire, the material will self-extinguish without dripping, melting or burning, protecting the worker from severe skin burns.

2. Moisture-wicking capabilities.

One side of the fibre loves moisture (hydrophilic) and the other side hates it (hydrophobic).

The side that loves moisture sits next to the wearer’s skin and pulls sweat into the fabric.

The side that hates moisture pushes the sweat away, causing it to spread. Body heat, wind and gravity then play their parts to remove perspiration from the clothing — keeping the worker comfortable.


The benefit of technical fabrics in winter:

There is a drastic change in temperature as miners travel up a mine shaft to the surface — it’s even worse in winter.

It’s the extreme version of stepping out of a hot shower on a cold morning. The water clinging to your skin wants to evaporate but needs your body heat to do so. This process leaves you shivering until you dry off.

By wearing the Pro-Dry® T-Shirt, miners are more comfortable because the shirt moves moisture away from their skin. The Elements™ Lightning Jacket has the same love/hate relationship with liquids, so it will continue pushing sweat to the outer layer of the jacket.

Miners who wear these new PPE options won’t feel like they just stepped out of the shower when they come to the surface.

Products mentioned in this post:

This post features products from DragonWear, which specializes in men’s and women’s PPE for extreme temperatures, low visibility and challenging environments.

Contact us to learn more about the DragonWear products we carry, ask about a wear trial or get a quote.


Dragonwear pro-dry FR T-Shirt

Pro Dry® Men’s FR T-Shirt

  • Inherently fire and arc-resistant
  • Tri-fiber fabric for permanent moisture management
  • Highly breathable and dries quickly
  • Silverplus® application for antimicrobial coverage
  • Available in navy and tan
  • Size S to 5XL

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Dragonwear pro-dry FR T-Shirt

Pro Dry® Women’s FR T-Shirt

  • Inherently fire and arc-resistant
  • Tri-fiber fabric for permanent moisture management
  • Highly breathable and dries quickly
  • Silverplus® application for antimicrobial coverage
  • Size S to 2XL

Shop now


Dragonwear Pro Dry® Long Sleeve Hi-Vis Orange Shirt

Pro Dry® Long Sleeve Shirt

  • Odour resistant
  • Inherently fire and arc-resistant
  • Tri-fiber fabric for permanent moisture management
  • Highly breathable and dries quickly
  • Available in navy, hi-viz orange, regular length and tall
  • Size S to 5XL

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Dragonwear Elements Lightning High Visibility Orange Jacket

Elements™ Lightning Jacket

  • Inherently fire and arc-resistant
  • Stands up against wind, rain and sleet
  • Wicks moisture for better breathability and shorter drying times
  • Built-in balaclava
  • Sizes S to 5XL

Shop now

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Leslie Molin

Market Segment Manager - Personal Safety

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