Industry organizations continue to improve performance and safety of first responders’ gear. These organizations assess and modify requirements for everything from raw materials to manufacturing processes, and from individual component performance to the construction and maintenance of the completed ensemble. New research and advanced technologies are evaluated and incorporated into the standards with the goal of improving responder safety.
A Revolutionary Shift In What’s Possible
Performance of traditional turnout gear usually requires a tradeoff between thermal protection and breathability. With the GORE® PARALLON™ liner system, it’s now possible to achieve unparalleled levels of breathability, while maintaining thermal protection better when your gear gets wet.
Research and the Evolution of Breathability in Turnout Gear
Research has always been a key component of change in the fire industry, with the primary goal of improving the safety and performance of firefighters. Through research and the guidance of the NFPA Standards, the role of the moisture barrier has evolved from a non-breathable barrier that blocked hot liquids to a breathable barrier that significantly reduces heat stress and protects against blood, body fluids, common chemicals and water. In fact, the latest advancements have resulted in systems that provide even higher breathability while improving thermal protection.
When Minutes Matter Most
When developing new fabric technologies, we collaborate with end users to ensure that our products provide reliable protection without compromising performance in challenging environments.
Thermal Stability of Structural Turnout Ensembles
When referring to firefighters’ turnout gear, thermal stability generally refers to the gear’s ability to maintain its level of performance after exposure to heat. To evaluate the thermal stability of an ensemble, it is important to assess the individual layers (outer shell, thermal liner, and moisture barrier). If these layers are not thermally stable, the gear’s performance may decline after exposure to heat.
NFPA 1971 Proposed Stored Energy Testing
The 2012 edition of the NFPA 1971 standard will require ensemble manufacturers to perform stored thermal energy (STE) testing on attachments to outer shell sleeves. Learn about stored energy, how this new testing relates to the TPP requirement already in the standard, and potential solutions for compliance with the new requirements.