ER Standards

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Industry Standards

A number of important documents govern the design, performance, testing, and certification of fire fighters’ clothing and equipment.  Listed below are several National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards.  Each covers an ensemble or element of fire fighters’ and emergency responders’ protective clothing, equipment, or station uniforms.  For more information on NFPA standards visit the NFPA website.


NFPA 1971, Standard on Protective Ensembles for Structural Fire Fighting and Proximity Fire Fighting, 2007 Edition: 1971 specifies the minimum design, performance, testing, and certification requirements for structural fire fighting protective ensembles and for proximity fire fighting protective ensembles and ensemble elements; including coats, pants, helmets, gloves, boots and hoods.  1971 also establishes additional optional requirements for limited protection from specified chemicals, biological agents, and radiological particulates (CBRN) terrorism agents.


NFPA 1951, Standard on Protective Ensembles for Technical Rescue Incidents, 2007 Edition: 1951 specifies the minimum design, performance, testing, and certification requirements for protective ensembles for use by emergency services personnel during technical rescue incidents.  Elements of the ensemble include: garments, helmets, gloves, footwear, interface, and eye and face protection devices.  1951 provides requirements for three classes of ensembles: utility, rescue and recovery, and chemicals, biological agents, and radiological particulate (CBRN.)


NFPA 1994, Standard on Protective Ensembles for First Responders to CBRN Terrorism Incidents, 2007 Edition: 1994 establishes the minimum requirements for the design, performance, testing, documentation, and certification of protective ensembles and ensemble elements for protection from chemicals, biological agents, and radiological particulates (CBRN) terrorism agents.  1994 provides requirements for three classes of ensembles. 


NFPA 1999, Standard on Protective Clothing for Emergency Medical Operations, 2008 Edition: 1999 specifies the minimum documentation, design, performance, testing, and certification requirements for emergency medical protective clothing used by fire and emergency services personnel during emergency medical operations.  It provides requirements for garments, gloves, footwear, and face protection devices, and for single-use and multiple-use items.


NFPA 1977, Standard on Protective Clothing and Equipment for Wildland Fire Fighting, 2005 Edition: 1977 specifies the minimum design, performance, testing, and certification requirements for wildland fire fighting protective clothing, helmets, gloves, and footwear.  It also specifies minimum design and certification requirements for fire shelters. 


NFPA 1975, Standard on Station/Work Uniforms for Fire and Emergency Services, 2004 Edition: 1975 specifies requirements for the design, performance, testing, and certification of station/work uniforms.  It provides requirements for thermally stable textiles for use in station work uniforms and optional requirements for flame resistant textiles.  1975 does not apply to garments intended to be worn as primary protection.


NFPA 1851, Standard on Selection, Care, and Maintenance of Protective Ensembles for Structural Fire Fighting and Proximity Fire Fighting, 2008 Edition: 1851 establishes minimum selection, care, and maintenance requirements for structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements, and for proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements, including coats, pants, helmets, gloves, boots and hoods.  It also provides requirements for the storage and retirement of these protective ensembles.  

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