What are the Critical Defects for a Garment?

Definition of Critical defects:

According to the Quality Assurance Manual of Gap Inc. "Anything which can harm the wearer of the product are critical defects".

Critical defects are also defined as a defect that is likely to result in hazardous or unsafe conditions for an individual in using the product and that does not meet the mandatory regulations.

A critical defect in clothes may cause an accident to the wearer and may malfunction when the wearer out wearing a garment with a critical defect.

Examples of some critical defects:

Loose components: Trims and fasteners those are used in the garment but not secure properly. For example, buttons, snaps, stones etc.

Sharp edges: During the processing of the garment it come in contact with various sharp metals such as needles, staples. Broken needles, damaged or broken snap buttons, rivets, wire and pins.

Drawstrings at head or neck for baby or kids products. Draw string must be avoided in kids clothes.
Thread or trims which are extensively long or loose.

Critical defects in kids hoodie
Kids Hoodie without Drawstring | Image source: Gap.com

All the above critical defects must not be present in the product in any circumstances. In an audit, if an inspector finds such defects in packed garments, he must fail the audit and ask the quality checker for a re-inspection of all goods. 

In AQL inspection, among the 3 defects categories (critical defects, major defects, and minor defects), any critical defects found in a visual inspection, may cause the audit failure.  

In a garment factory, management should run an awareness program on critical defects and the potential risk of the critical defects at an end-user point.
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