NFPA 1981: Standard on Open-Circuit Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) for Emergency Services
Current Edition: 2013 Next Edition: 2018

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NFPA 1981:
2013 Edition
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What is NFPA 1981?
NFPA 1981: Document Scope
1.1 Scope. 1.1.1* This standard shall specify the minimum requirements for the design, performance, testing, and certification of new compressed breathing air open-circuit self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) and compressed breathing air combination open-circuit self-contained breathing apparatus and supplied air respirators (SCBA/SARs) and for the replacement parts, components, and accessories for these respirators. 1.1.2 This standard shall also specify the minimum requirements for the design, performance, testing, and certification of replacement parts, components, and add-on accessories for SCBA and combination SCBA/SARs certified as compliant to specific earlier editions of this standard. 1.1.3 This standard shall not specify requirements for other types of SCBA. 1.1.4* This standard shall not specify requirements for any accessories that could be attached to the certified product that are not certified by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). 1.1.5 This standard shall not establish criteria for SCBA for water or underwater operations. 1.1.6 This standard shall not establish criteria for protection from ionizing radiation. 1.1.7 This standard shall not be construed as addressing all of the safety concerns associated with the use of compliant SCBA and combination SCBA/SARs. It shall be the responsibility of the persons and organizations that use compliant SCBA and combination SCBA/SARs to establish safety and health practices and to determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use. 1.1.8 This standard shall not be construed as addressing all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with the use of this standard by testing facilities. It shall be the responsibility of the persons and organizations that use this standard to conduct testing of SCBA and combination SCBA/SARs to establish safety and health practices and to determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to using this standard for any designing, manufacturing, and testing. 1.1.9 Nothing herein shall restrict any jurisdiction or manufacturer from exceeding these minimum requirements.
This standard establishes levels of respiratory protection and functional requirements for SCBA used by emergency services personnel. Official document scope
What does NFPA 1981 address?
Requirements cover certification, labeling, design requirements, performance requirements, and test methods and apply to all open-circuit SCBA and combination SCBA/SARs used during fire fighting, rescue, hazardous materials, terrorist incidents, and similar operations where responders may encounter confined spaces, atmospheres that are unknown, atmospheres that are or could become Immediate Dangerous to Life and Health (IDLH), or atmospheres that are or could become oxygen deficient.Table Of Contents.
NFPA 1981, 2013 Edition: Archived Revision Information
Report on Proposals (ROP)
Report on Proposals (ROP)
Proposals can be submitted for text to be amended or included in NFPA Codes and Standards. Following the Call for Proposals period, the responsible Technical Committee or Panel holds a meeting to consider and act on all submitted proposals. The committee or panel may also develop its own proposals. A document known as the Report on Proposals (ROP) is prepared containing all the Public Proposals, Technical Committees' action on each Proposal, as well as all Committee-generated proposals. The ROP for the document in question is submitted for the approval of the responsible TC or Panel by a formal written ballot. If the ROP does not receive approval via written ballot in accordance with NFPA rules, the Report is returned to the committee for further consideration and is not published. If the necessary approval is received, the ROP is published in a compilation of Reports on Proposals issued by NFPA twice yearly for public review and comment, and the process continues to the next step. The ROP is published and widely distributed and anyone may download or request a copy.
ROP Meeting Notice
ROP Meeting Notice
Note: Please contact the appropriate staff liaison (listed on the Technical Committee tab) for information on attending an NFPA Technical Committee meeting as a guest. Read NFPA"s Regulations Governing Committee Projects (Section 3.3.3.3) for further information.
ROP Meeting Agenda
ROP Meeting Minutes
ROP Ballot
ROP Ballot
The ballots posted on this page are for public information only. Voting on ballots is permitted by committee members only. See NFPA Regulations Governing Committee Projects, Section 3.3.4.
Report on Comments (ROC)
Report on Comments (ROC)
Once the ROP becomes available, there is a 60-day comment period during which time anyone may submit a public comment on the proposed changes documented in the ROP. The committee or panel reconvenes at the end of the comment period and acts on all public comments. This committee or panel may also develop its own comments. As before, approval obtained via written ballot in accordance with NFPA's Regulations is required on all committee and panel actions. All of this information is compiled into a second Report, called the Report on Comments (ROC), which like the ROP, is published and made available for public review for a seven-week period.
Report on Comments (PDF, 2 MB)
ROC Meeting Notice
ROC Meeting Notice
Note: Please contact the appropriate staff liaison (listed on the Technical Committee tab) for information on attending an NFPA Technical Committee meeting as a guest. Read NFPA"s Regulations Governing Committee Projects (Section 3.3.3.3) for further information.
ROC Meeting Agenda
ROC Meeting Minutes
ROC Ballot
ROC Ballot
The ballots posted on this page are for public information only. Voting on ballots is permitted by committee members only. See NFPA Regulations Governing Committee Projects, Section 3.3.4.
Motions Committee Report (NITMAM)
Motions Committee Report (NITMAM)
Proposed NFPA documents will be presented for action at the applicable Annual (June) Association Technical Meeting only when proper Amending Motions (Notice of Intent to Make a Motion - NITMAM) have been certified by the Motions Committee of the Standards Council as a proper amending motion. Documents that receive no motions will not be presented at the meeting and instead will be forwarded directly to the NFPA Standards Council for action on issuance. More about the codes and standards making process including NITMAM.
No NITMAMs
Association Technical Meeting
Consent document not presented at Association Technical Meeting. Document issuance by Standards Council: 11/27/2012
Archived revision information
NFPA 1981, 2013 Edition: Archived Revision Information
View archived proposals, comments and other records related to the development of this edition.
Read the archived revision information
Tentative Interim Amendment (TIA)
Tentative Interim Amendment (TIA)
Tentative Interim Amendments (TIAs) are amendments to an NFPA document processed in accordance with Section 5 of the Regulations Governing Committee Projects. They have not gone through the entire codes and standards-making process of being published in a ROP and ROC for review and comment. TIAs are effective only between editions of the Document. A TIA automatically becomes a proposal of the proponent for the next edition of the Document, as such is then subject to all of the procedures of the codes and standards making process. TIAs are published in NFPA News , NFCSS, and any further distribution of the document after being issued by the Standards Council.

Requests for TIAs shall be clearly worded to provide the recommended revision and the reason as to why it is of an emergency nature requiring prompt action. Submissions shall be in writing, addressed to the Standards Council Secretary, NFPA, 1 Batterymarch Park, Quincy, MA 02169-7471. The submitter must also provide the appropriate endorsments in writing of two members of the applicable technical committee or technical correlating committee. For further information on submitting a TIA, please contact Codes and Standards Administration.

TIA 13-1, Reference: 4.1.11 and 4.1.12 (issued 3/3/2014) (PDF, 19 KB)
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