U.S. Department of Homeland Security issues five NFPA documents for first responder protective equipment purchase

Published on February 26, 2004
All five NFPA standards available online in read-only format. 
 
Mike Brown, DHS Under Secretary for Emergency Preparedness; NFPA President Jim Shannon; and Dr. Charles McQueary, DHS Under Secretary for Science and Technology, meet following the Washington, DC, news conference announcing the adoption of five NFPA standards.

The five NFPA standards, the first of their kind to be adopted by DHS, will protect first responders against chemical, biological and other hazards at emergency incidents.
February 26, 2004—The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) today adopted five NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) standards for personal protective equipment for first responders. These adoptions will assist state and local procurement officials in selecting the best available protective equipment.

The standards, the first of their kind to be adopted by DHS, will protect first responders against chemical, biological and other hazards at emergency incidents.

The five standards are:

In addition, DHS adopted three other standards, from the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, (NIOSH), for respirators to protect against chemical/biological/ radiological/nuclear environments. The standards adopted today will also provide manufacturers with requirements for the design, performance, testing, and certification of equipment.

At a press conference announcing the adoption of standards, at the District of Columbia Fire Station #3, NFPA President James M. Shannon said, "NFPA began work on many protective clothing and equipment standards for first responders long before the attacks on our nation. More must be done to provide adequate protection for our first responders. The steps taken today by DHS go a long way in ensuring that will happen."

All five NFPA standards will be available online in read-only format, effective March 1st.

All NFPA safety codes and standards are developed through a process accredited by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). The 200 technical committees responsible for developing and updating all 300 codes and standards include 6,000 volunteers, representing enforcing authorities, installation and maintenance, labor, research and testing, insurance, special experts, consumers and other users.

NFPA has been a worldwide leader in providing fire, electrical, building, and life safety to the public since 1896. The mission of the international nonprofit organization is to reduce the worldwide burden of fire and other hazards on the quality of life by providing and advocating scientifically-based consensus codes and standards, research, training and education.

NFPA 1951, Standard on Protective Ensemble for USAR Operations
Based on work begun in 1997, this standard answers the need for personal protective equipment for fire and emergency services personnel operating at technical rescue incidents involving building or structural collapse, vehicle accidents, confined spaces, trench cave-ins, scaffolding collapses, high angle climbing accidents, and similar incidents. The first edition of this standard was issued in July 2001.

NFPA 1981, Standard on Open-Circuit Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus for Fire and Emergency Services
Based on work begun in 1975, this standard specifies the minimum requirements for the design, performance, testing, and certification of open-circuit self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) and combination open-circuit self-contained breathing apparatus and supplied air respirators (SCBA/SAR) for the respiratory protection of fire and emergency responders where unknown, IDLH (immediately dangerous to life and health), or potentially IDLH atmospheres exist. The first edition was issued in July 1981 and the current edition, issued in July 2002, is the fifth edition.

NFPA 1991, Standard on Vapor-Protective Ensembles for Hazardous Materials Emergencies
Based on work begun in 1986, this standard specifies the minimum requirements for the design, performance, testing, and certification of vapor-protective ensembles and individual protective elements for chemical vapor protection for fire and emergency service personnel. Additional optional criteria are provided for ensembles and individual protective elements that provide protection for chemical flash fire escape, liquefied gas, chemical and biological warfare agents, and chemical and biological terrorism incidents. The first edition was issued in January 1990 and the current edition, issued in January 2000, is the third edition.

NFPA 1994, Standard on Protective Ensembles for Chemical/Biological Terrorism Incidents
Based on work begun in 1998, this standard specifies the minimum requirements for the design, performance, testing, and certification of protective ensembles for fire and emergency services personnel operating at domestic terrorism incidents involving dual-use industrial chemicals, chemical terrorism agents, or biological terrorism agents. The intent is that the ensembles would be available in quantity, easily donned and used, and designed for single exposure use. The first edition of this standard was issued in July 2001.

NFPA 1999, Standard on Protective Clothing for Emergency Medical Operations
Based on work begun in 1990, this standard specifies the minimum requirements for the design, performance, testing, and certification of new single-use and multiple-use emergency medical protective clothing, including garments, gloves, footwear, and face protection devices, used by fire and emergency services personnel performing patient care during emergency medical operations for protection against exposure to blood and body fluid-borne pathogens. The first edition was issued in July 1992 and the current edition, issued in January 2003, is the third edition.

NFPA (National Fire Protection Association)
1 Batterymarch Park, Quincy, MA 02169-7471 USA
Telephone: +1 617 770-3000 Fax: +1 617 770-0700