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    Default when does tunout gear need to replaced

    Looking for info for when gear needs to be replaced? Is there a time limit or does it have to just pass inspection. What if the nfpa standard changes does that start a clock on replacement?

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    Quote Originally Posted by zman132 View Post
    Looking for info for when gear needs to be replaced? Is there a time limit or does it have to just pass inspection. What if the nfpa standard changes does that start a clock on replacement?
    I think that as long as the gear passes inspection and testing required under the edition of NFPA 1971 that it was purchased under then it is still serviceable. We use a repair and refurb company in Louisiana and they do great work. the gear comes back ready for use and in condition where it can go right back into service. Now if it fails test or inspection it is red tagged and sent back saying REMOVE FROM SERVICE
    To err is human, To forgive divine and at times I am as much of both as you will ever find

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    I have looked into this and nobody will give you a concrete answer except the fibre manufacturers. If the company that makes the fabric says it has a shelf life, and your garments are made of that fabric, I would go out on a limb and go with thier recommendation.

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    Per NFPA 1851 Selection, Care, and Maintenance of Protective Ensembles for Structural Fire Fighting and Proximity Fire Fighting
    2008 Edition, the following is stated:

    10.1 Retirement.

    10.1.1* The organization shall develop specific criteria for removal of structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements and proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements from service, which includes, but is not limited to, issues that are specific to the ensembles or ensemble elements being used by the organization, the manufacturer’s instructions, and the experience of the organization.

    10.1.2* Structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements shall be retired in accordance with 10.2.1, no more than 10 years from the date the ensembles or ensemble elements were manufactured.

    10.1.3 Proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements shall be retired in accordance with 10.2.1, no more than 10 years from the date the ensembles or ensemble elements were manufactured.

    10.1.3.1* In all cases, the radiant reflective outer shell shall be replaced at a maximum of 5 years.

    10.1.4* Structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements and proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements that are worn or damaged to the extent that the organization deems it not possible or cost effective to repair them shall be retired in accordance with 10.2.1.

    10.1.5* Structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements and proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements that were not in compliance with the edition of the applicable NFPA standard that was current when the ensembles and ensemble elements were manufactured shall be retired in accordance with 10.2.1.

    10.1.6 Structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements and proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements that are contaminated to the extent that the organization deems it not possible or cost effective to decontaminate them shall be retired in accordance with 10.2.1.

    10.1.7 Structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements and proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements that are contaminated by CBRN terrorism agents shall be immediately retired as specified in 10.2.1 after confirmed exposure and shall not be reused.

    10.1.8* Structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements and proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements that are no longer of use to the organization for emergency operations service but are not contaminated, defective, or damaged shall be retired in accordance with 10.2.1 or 10.2.2.

    10.2 Disposition of Retired Elements.

    10.2.1 Retired structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements and proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements shall be destroyed or disposed of in a manner ensuring that they will not be used in any fire fighting or emergency activities, including live fire training.

    10.2.2 Retired structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements and proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements as determined in 10.1.8 shall be permitted to be used as follows:

    (1) For training that does not involve live fire, provided the ensembles and ensemble elements are appropriately marked as being for non–live fire training only

    (2) As determined by the organization

    10.3 Special Incident Procedure.

    10.3.1* The organization shall have procedures for the handling and custody of structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements and proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements that were worn by fire fighters who were victims at incidents where serious injuries or fatalities to the fire fighters occurred.

    10.3.2 In the absence of any other prevailing rules of evidence, the organization’s procedures shall include at least the following:

    (1) Provisions shall be made for the immediate removal from service and preservation of all structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements and proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements utilized by the injured or deceased fire fighter.

    (2) Custody of such ensembles and ensemble elements shall be maintained at a secure location with controlled, documented access.

    (3) All such structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements and proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements shall be nondestructively tagged and stored only in paper or cardboard containers to prevent further degradation or damage. Plastic or airtight containers shall not be used.

    (4) Examination of the structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements and proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements shall be made by qualified members of the organization or by outside experts to determine the condition thereof.

    10.3.3 The organization shall determine a specific period of time for retaining custody of structural fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements and proximity fire fighting ensembles and ensemble elements.

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    theres your answer. of course the NFPA can only recommend things like cleaning, storage and maintenance. you can choose not to follow them.

    Keep in mind the people that recommend retiring equip every 10 yrs are the same people that want to sell you new gear.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LeatherHed4Life View Post
    Keep in mind the people that recommend retiring equip every 10 yrs are the same people that want to sell you new gear.
    ...and that, my friends, sums up NFPA in a nutshell
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    — C.D. Bales, "Roxanne"

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    That's exactly right. If you look deeper into the NFPA committees, you'll see that in most instances, the manufacturers or a representative of them are sitting in on the committee. Take for example proximity gear (silvers). There are only a few, and I'm talking about one maybe two suppliers of the silver material that supply the main vendors (Globe, Morning pride, etc.) And guess what, that company has a rep on the NFPA committee.
    Last edited by kferrara2002; 05-18-2008 at 08:11 PM.

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    I have lots of gear coming on 10 years, we take care of our stuff, but much of it is failing inspections by a qualified third party that does laundering and repairs.

    I'm sorry, but nothing is staying longer than 10 years, whether we feel that someone is trying to profit from it or not. Look at the entire committee, it isn't all manufacturer's reps, at least half of the committee I believe needs to be fire service based.

    I can't imagine having to go talk to one of my fellow firefighters in the burn unit because we didn't want to follow an industry standard.
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    I've researched the members of the last technical committee that worked on NFPA 1851.

    I count 34 souls, of which 8 are with a company producing safety gear we wear, not just turnouts, but gloves and helmets as well.

    Surely these eight votes must count more that the 26 others, who are members of fire departments, certification houses, advocacy groups, etc.

    See for yourself. Look six pages in once you get the standard loaded. http://www.nfpa.org/freecodes/free_a....asp?id=185108

    We can gripe that some of what the NFPA places in their standards may not make sense to us, but be assured it isn't just the manufacturers making these decisions. I've met a few folks that do this work, I truly believe that all have the best intent at heart.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LeatherHed4Life View Post
    theres your answer. of course the NFPA can only recommend things like cleaning, storage and maintenance. you can choose not to follow them.

    Keep in mind the people that recommend retiring equip every 10 yrs are the same people that want to sell you new gear.
    this is a valid point but i would like to point out that if you have a governing body ex. in texas we have the texas commission on fire protection (TCFP) and they have adopted the nfpa standard previously cited. they say you must replace gear every ten years no matter what. unless you have the cash to pay the fine when they do their yearly check, then it is in the departments best interest to comply.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kferrara2002 View Post
    That's exactly right. If you look deeper into the NFPA committees, you'll see that in most instances, the manufacturers or a representative of them are sitting in on the committee. Take for example proximity gear (silvers). There are on only a few, and I'm talking about one maybe two suppliers of the silver material that supply the main vendors (Globe, Morning pride, etc.) And guess what, that company has a rep on the NFPA committee.
    And there are also fire service personnel on the committees as well.

    And everyone has the opportunity to provide their input when the standard is up for revision.

    NFPA isnt perfect and no, I havent drank the NFPA coolaid. But, its what we have in addition to following the manufacturers guildelines.
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    We use a third party inspection/repair service. Our last mass gear issue started failing after about 8 years. We've lost a few sets along the way due to duty-related damage, and a few have been repairable at reasonable cost, but I'd be surprised if any make it to 10 years.

    In the case of TOG, I'd be very comfortable retiring gear at 10 years with no third party inspection, NFPA standard or not.
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    We have Brothers on the job that actually "brag" that their gear never gets washed or inspected because, in their words "we are too busy fighting fires" to have it done...

    Bull****.

    I am on my 6th set of gear in 27+ years ( of course, the newest set came with the promotion)

    My FD replaces 20% of the gear a year, so the average life of first line gear is 5 years. The older gear goes into reserve after cleaning and inspection and is available for use should one's gear get crapped up with contaminants or get torn, etc.
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
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    Originally Posted by mtnfireguy

    And there are also fire service personnel on the committees as well.

    And everyone has the opportunity to provide their input when the standard is up for revision.
    I'm not saying that the other members of the committee are without a say in the standard, however, what technical information do they have to provide towards setting the time frame shorter or longer? They have the "expertise" of the product manufacturer to rely on.

    Yes everyone has a vote when the standard is due for revision. But with that, refer back to the manufacturers. Who are the "experts"? I do not have the capability or time to conduct research and testing of the materials out there on the market. I have to go by what the manufacturers have told me in the literature and any references they are willing to provide. Is that a good practice? I really cannot answer that. But who are we going to turn to to counter what the manufacturer has made as their standard, especially when there are only one or two manufacturers of a particular material (Proximity).

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    Quote Originally Posted by trevolp View Post
    this is a valid point but i would like to point out that if you have a governing body ex. in texas we have the texas commission on fire protection (TCFP) and they have adopted the nfpa standard previously cited. they say you must replace gear every ten years no matter what. unless you have the cash to pay the fine when they do their yearly check, then it is in the departments best interest to comply.
    i was under the impression the NFPA couldnt "enforce" anything, merely recommend.

    Does the TCFP actually enforce the recommendations cited by the NFPA? What about manpower requirements and other stringent rec's they have made in thier dream fire dept.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LeatherHed4Life View Post
    theres your answer. of course the NFPA can only recommend things like cleaning, storage and maintenance. you can choose not to follow them.

    Keep in mind the people that recommend retiring equip every 10 yrs are the same people that want to sell you new gear.
    You and the others can spout your conspiracy theories on NFPA all you want, but the reality is that if your department is seeing any type of real action, then the gear will need to be replaced before 10 years anyway. So in reality, the only people that will possibly be affected by this are the really small departments that barely run any calls and thus don't "use up" their gear.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LeatherHed4Life View Post
    i was under the impression the NFPA couldnt "enforce" anything, merely recommend.

    Does the TCFP actually enforce the recommendations cited by the NFPA? What about manpower requirements and other stringent rec's they have made in thier dream fire dept.
    NFPA itself can't enforce compliance with their standards, however if the AHJ adopts any of all of the NFPA standards as "law", then compliance with the adopted NFPA standards can be enforced by the AHJ.

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    Firemedic049.... you are exactly right in saying that the smaller volunteer departments are the ones that will feel the pinch with the implementation of this new standard. Large career and military departments where the budget is there have no problem purchasing gear every 10 years. Large cities like New York, LA, Chicago can afford new gear routinely because they run so many calls. Small town America departments are lucky to even have gear for each member. I've actually volunteer departments operate where they share the gear; first at the station gets the gear, everyone else gets to watch or hump hose outside. Grants people, that's all I have to say.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kferrara2002 View Post
    Firemedic049.... you are exactly right in saying that the smaller volunteer departments are the ones that will feel the pinch with the implementation of this new standard. Large career and military departments where the budget is there have no problem purchasing gear every 10 years. Large cities like New York, LA, Chicago can afford new gear routinely because they run so many calls. Small town America departments are lucky to even have gear for each member. I've actually volunteer departments operate where they share the gear; first at the station gets the gear, everyone else gets to watch or hump hose outside. Grants people, that's all I have to say.

    I think that is a pretty myopic view. I could argue that since you don't have to pay wages and benefits your budget allows for purchase of newer and better safety equipment than most paid departments get. Are NY, LA, and Chicago billing citizens for putting out fires? Why would running lots of fires allow the purchase of more gear. That is absolutely nonsensical.

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    I really don't believe that I had a narrow view of what I was referring to. Military departments do in fact have budgets, of which are constrained at the present due to all funds being sent to the War in Iraq (Global War on Terrorism or GWOT). Trying to get funding for necessary equipment in the military is not as easy as you may think. And yes the military budgets do factor in wages for both military and civilian as well as benefits. It's not something that is outright visual, but is there in the background. Hence the waiting game for federal firefighters and Hazard Duty Pay.

    Regarding NY, LA and Chicago, I am sure they are somehow billing citizens to fight fires or respond to other emergencies. Those citizens may not know it because it's sometimes hidden in their taxes or other fees.

    By running a plethora of calls, in particular structural emergencies, that in itself justifies the need to purchase new gear; that's assuming the gear is damaged or contaminated. Did you know that Proximity gear in itself cannot be properly cleaned (using an extractor) because of the damage the silver shell will receive. As a result, firefighters who wear Proximity gear have been reporting skin rashes and diseases on their necks due to the inability to properly wash their gear. That fact alone can be a justification to replace Proximity gear within the NFPA recommended time-frame. In fact, the manufacturers and NFPA recommend that once Proximity gear is contaminated, it shall be replaced immediately.

    So before you comment assuming what I stated has no meaning or any importance, maybe you should do some research of why turn-out gear needs to be replaced. Not only does damaged gear pose a safety concern, but contaminated gear (bio, chemical, fire residue) poses an equal if not a more significant health and safety concern to the wearer.

    As I stated, if the volleys cannot afford to replace their "in need of replacement" gear, look toward applying for grants. If written successfully, a grant could be awarded though an application to FEMA (Homeland Security). Improperly equipped firefighters are unable to respond and mitigate an incident that threatens the nation thus opens the door to a grant being awarded for PPE.
    Last edited by kferrara2002; 05-19-2008 at 08:49 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kferrara2002 View Post
    I really don't believe that I had a narrow view of what I was referring to. Military departments do in fact have budgets, of which are constrained at the present due to all funds being sent to the War in Iraq (Global War on Terrorism or GWOT). Trying to get funding for necessary equipment in the military is not as easy as you may think. And yes the military budgets do factor in wages for both military and civilian as well as benefits. It's not something that is outright visual, but is there in the background. Hence the waiting game for federal firefighters and Hazard Duty Pay.

    Regarding NY, LA and Chicago, I am sure they are somehow billing citizens to fight fires or respond to other emergencies. Those citizens may not know it because it's sometimes hidden in their taxes or other fees.

    By running a plethora of calls, in particular structural emergencies, that in itself justifies the need to purchase new gear; that's assuming the gear is damaged or contaminated. Did you know that Proximity gear in itself cannot be properly cleaned (using an extractor) because of the damage the silver shell will receive. As a result, firefighters who wear Proximity gear have been reporting skin rashes and diseases on their necks due to the inability to properly wash their gear. That fact alone can be a justification to replace Proximity gear within the NFPA recommended time-frame. In fact, the manufacturers and NFPA recommend that once Proximity gear is contaminated, it shall be replaced immediately.

    So before you comment assuming what I stated has no meaning or any importance, maybe you should do some research of why turn-out gear needs to be replaced. Not only does damaged gear pose a safety concern, but contaminated gear (bio, chemical, fire residue) poses an equal if not a more significant health and safety concern to the wearer.

    As I stated, if the volleys cannot afford to replace their "in need of replacement" gear, look toward applying for grants. If written successfully, a grant could be awarded though an application to FEMA (Homeland Security). Improperly equipped firefighters are unable to respond and mitigate an incident that threatens the nation thus opens the door to a grant being awarded for PPE.
    Your post was not about justification, it was about an increased number of calls somehow leading to an increased liklihood of gear replacement that simply doesn't have any basis in fact.

    I am sure military firefighters like everyone in the military is seeing budgets dry up to fight the war in Iraq. I don't believe it is a good reason to not equip firefighters protecting bases. I also don't believe it is a good idea for city's to build new parks when turn-out gear is not being replaced when needed.

    I agree with you that turn-out gear needs to be replaced on a regular basis. I just think you were using a bad example.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Geinandputitout View Post
    I think that is a pretty myopic view. I could argue that since you don't have to pay wages and benefits your budget allows for purchase of newer and better safety equipment than most paid departments get. Are NY, LA, and Chicago billing citizens for putting out fires? Why would running lots of fires allow the purchase of more gear. That is absolutely nonsensical.

    You haven't a clue. When the big city FD is paying union FF wages the cost of gear (or a new pumper ever couple years) is chump change. Add it up 2shift x 4FF @ $50000/FF (x1.5 with overhead expense) = $600000/yr. So hows that $2000/FF for gear even get in the budget? Replace it every 12 months. Get a new pumper @ $350000 every other year. Trivial expenses. The City has a tax base to support a paid FD (at least in theory).

    My FD operates on tax collections of $12000/yr (and no, we can not increase tax collections). Maint, fuel, insurance, heat/lights for station, and occasional grant match/equipment improvements. 15FF @$2000 every 10yr for new TO gear ($3000 annually)? Hardly likely to happen.

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    Quote Originally Posted by neiowa View Post
    You haven't a clue. When the big city FD is paying union FF wages the cost of gear (or a new pumper ever couple years) is chump change. Add it up 2shift x 4FF @ $50000/FF (x1.5 with overhead expense) = $600000/yr. So hows that $2000/FF for gear even get in the budget? Replace it every 12 months. Get a new pumper @ $350000 every other year. Trivial expenses. The City has a tax base to support a paid FD (at least in theory).

    My FD operates on tax collections of $12000/yr (and no, we can not increase tax collections). Maint, fuel, insurance, heat/lights for station, and occasional grant match/equipment improvements. 15FF @$2000 every 10yr for new TO gear ($3000 annually)? Hardly likely to happen.
    If you can't afford a fire deparment, then move somewhere that can. If your township trustees aren't willing to foot the bill to provide you adequate protection, then why bother providing service.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kferrara2002 View Post
    Firemedic049.... you are exactly right in saying that the smaller volunteer departments are the ones that will feel the pinch with the implementation of this new standard. Large career and military departments where the budget is there have no problem purchasing gear every 10 years. Large cities like New York, LA, Chicago can afford new gear routinely because they run so many calls. Small town America departments are lucky to even have gear for each member. I've actually volunteer departments operate where they share the gear; first at the station gets the gear, everyone else gets to watch or hump hose outside. Grants people, that's all I have to say.
    Thanks, but I don't think I was making the point you think I might have been. The busy departments should be in a position to need to replace their gear long before they reach the 10 year mark. So that leaves the slow departments, which generally tend to be volunteer departments and often with "low" membership numbers. So without the considerable wage cost that can be present with a career department, these slower departments should be able to find a way over the course of 10 years to plan and pay for gear replacement.

    Besides, unless NFPA standards have been adopted by the local municipality or state, these departments aren't mandated to replace the gear at 10 years.

    So personnally, I don't think this will have the huge impact that people think it will.

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    Originally posted by: Geinandputitout
    If you can't afford a fire department, then move somewhere that can. If your township trustees aren't willing to foot the bill to provide you adequate protection, then why bother providing service.
    So you're supposed to sit back and watch the town burn down because the gear you have is inadequate? Are you serious? Dude, get a grip on reality. I know that if a municipality does not adopt the NFPA standards they are "exempt" from the standard. However, think of the big picture. Take a firefighter who is in an organization that does not follow the recommendations of NFPA. That particular firefighter responds to a fire and is subsequently severely injured or even worse killed in the line of duty because the gear he or she was wearing failed. Who is to blame? Are you going to hold the individual responsible for not inspecting their gear and identifying the need to replace it? Are you going to hold the department responsible for failure to adequately equip their members with safe and in-service PPE? Or are you going to hold the manufacturer of the gear to include the material manufacturer for failure to enforce the need to make replacement mandatory?

    As you can see, this issue has the potential to open a few doors that will lead to who knows where. Are you willing to sit back and accept what your township tells you regarding the purchase of adequate PPE and equipment or are you going to make a stand and push the issue. I guess by your statement, you don't care about the safety of you and your fellow firefighters when it comes to adequate PPE.

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