CROSSTECH® Footwear Now Available for Law Enforecment

(Elkton, Maryland - January 15, 2008) W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc., announces a new line of CROSSTECH® Footwear Fabric that provides law enforcement professionals with the same high level of protection and comfort currently available in boots for fire and emergency medical professionals. Working closely with major footwear manufacturers, Gore has designed a series of CROSSTECH® Footwear Fabrics that protect law enforcement professionals against blood, body fluids, and common chemicals. At the same time, these fabrics allow moisture vapor (sweat) to escape from the boot, helping to increase the wearer's comfort.

These CROSSTECH® Footwear Fabrics have been designed specifically to meet the specifications for each manufacturer's performance requirements. According to Bill Candy, product specialist at W. L. Gore & Associates, “Gore is committed to providing the right product for each application. We worked closely with Bates, Danner, HAIX®, Matterhorn, and Timberland to identify both the breathability and protection requirements for their specific products. By offering a variety of CROSSTECH® Fabrics that protect against blood, body fluid, and common chemicals, Gore gave the manufacturers the flexibility to use fabric, leather, or a combination for their boot uppers.”

According to Andrew Fowler, Bates national sales manager, Bates combined their patented DuraShocks® comfort technology with CROSSTECH® Footwear Fabric in a six-inch and an eight-inch side-zipped boot with leather and nylon uppers. Bates believes this combination provides the consumer with the best protection in a breathable, comfortable shoe. Along with its parent company, Wolverine World Wide, Inc., Bates continues to maintain one of its longest standing partnerships with Gore. Fowler sums up this relationship by saying, “Bates has always partnered with the best component suppliers in every market, and Gore is hands-down the top in the protective membrane category, whether we're talking about consumer, military, fire, chem-bio, or law enforcement.”

Because of the proprietary expanded polytetrafluoroethylene (ePTFE) membrane incorporated in the CROSSTECH® Fabric, the material passes both ASTM F1671 (Blood-Borne Pathogen Resistance) and ASTM F903C (Chemical Resistance) standards. This special membrane is thermally stable to more than 500°F and inherently chemically inert, which allows them to be worn in even the harshest environments. The flexibility, waterproofness, and chemical resistance of these CROSSTECH® Footwear Fabrics have been tested to ensure superior durability.

Tyler Morley, Danner's uniform product line manager, describes Danner's Striker™ II Assault boot as newly designed to provide special protective benefits for tactical officers working in the toughest conditions. Built with the Danner TERRA FORCE™ X LITE performance platform, which provides a slip-resistant outsole for extra stability, and the puncture-resistant Flex-Shield II midsole, the Striker™ II Assault boot features full-grain leather and breathable quarter panels for durability and comfort. When asked about their choice of CROSSTECH® Fabric, Morley says, “We chose CROSSTECH® Fabric because we were building the ultimate boot for law enforcement special operations professionals, and we felt they deserved the best protection - not just waterproof protection, but protection from blood-borne pathogens as well.”

By developing boots with CROSSTECH® Footwear Fabric, manufacturers are providing law enforcement professionals with protection options from contaminants they are encountering more frequently. HAIX®, a manufacturer of high-quality, hand-crafted footwear for the fire and EMS industries, chooses to use CROSSTECH® Fabric from W. L. Gore & Associates to produce the Airpower® X1 EMS/station boot. Sandy Longarzo, customer service and marketing manager for HAIX® North America, says, “Using CROSSTECH® Fabric in conjunction with the HAIX® patented Micro Soft Light (MSL) System, the Airpower® X1 offers climatic comfort with superior penetration resistance to water and blood-borne pathogens while still remaining breathable. With the MSL System, the CROSSTECH® Fabric abrasion-resistant inner lining remains securely in place and does not crumple up or pull out. The HAIX® built-in arch support system and adjustable lacing zipper system provides optimal fit and comfort. On the cutting edge of technology, the Airpower® X1 is NFPA 1999-2003 certified for emergency medical operations.”

With approximately $2 billion in sales and 8,000 employees worldwide, W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc., specializes in fluoropolymer innovations that improve the quality of life. Gore has applied its world-renowned expertise in fluoropolymer fabrication to thousands of technology-driven applications in consumer, electronic, pharmaceutical, and medical product manufacturing. Specifically in the fabrics arena, Gore has been a pioneer in developing high-performance barrier products for use in law enforcement, firefighting, EMS, technical rescue, military, and domestic preparedness applications. The company operates more than 45 facilities worldwide with headquarters in Newark, Delaware, USA. For more information about CROSSTECH® Products, visit www.crosstech.com, call 800.431.GORE or 410.392.3600, or email [email protected].