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    Default ANSI 207 standards...in addition to full PPE?

    I've been reading about the new madated standards for public safety apparel when working on Federal Hwy systems. It says we have until Nov 24, 2008 to comply with the standard. What I don't understand is this in addition to the turnout jacket? We have nearly new turnouts. Now vest & jacket are required? Anyone care to help sort thru this? Thanks in advance.

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    Yes I have heard about requiring a vest over the turnout coat, and frankly I am all for it.

    Certain departments have been doing this for more than a decade and just now people are getting on with the process.

    We used to have a plain jane vest for each riding position on every truck, but just recently every member has been issued an ANSI class 2 compliant vest and is required to wear it on any roadway incident. (any roadway)
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    The main reason we have to wear an ANSI class 2 vest over our turnout gear is the amount of reflective surface for full 360 degree visibility. Regular gear just does not have enough reflective surface. If they would make an ANSI class 2 compliant turnout gear then we would not need the vest.
    "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." -- Benjamin Franklin

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    Quote Originally Posted by MarcusKspn View Post
    The main reason we have to wear an ANSI class 2 vest over our turnout gear is the amount of reflective surface for full 360 degree visibility. Regular gear just does not have enough reflective surface. If they would make an ANSI class 2 compliant turnout gear then we would not need the vest.
    It also has to do with the brighter non-reflective material. ANSI requires certain colors be used along with the reflective.

    Can you imagine what would happen if a chief ordered safety orange bunker gear?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Catch22 View Post
    It also has to do with the brighter non-reflective material. ANSI requires certain colors be used along with the reflective.

    Can you imagine what would happen if a chief ordered safety orange bunker gear?
    Come on, non of us would ever get hit on the side of the street again if they would just issue us Safety Orange Bunker Gear while we are jumping out of our Lime Green Fire Trucks with the Hot Pink Chevrons on the back.

    The public would be to busy crashing before they ever got to our truck due to sudden blindness and burning in their eyes.
    "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." -- Benjamin Franklin

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    Quote Originally Posted by MarcusKspn View Post
    The main reason we have to wear an ANSI class 2 vest over our turnout gear is the amount of reflective surface for full 360 degree visibility. Regular gear just does not have enough reflective surface. If they would make an ANSI class 2 compliant turnout gear then we would not need the vest.
    That would be a tough task. They would need material that is just as flame resistant as the coats themselves, they would also have to find somthing that would not fade or darken like our coats do after many fires. We all know what our coats and the reflective striping look like after 3 or 4 fires do you think that they could make a material that would put up to all that abuse and still be reflective?

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    Quote Originally Posted by MarcusKspn View Post
    The main reason we have to wear an ANSI class 2 vest over our turnout gear is the amount of reflective surface for full 360 degree visibility. Regular gear just does not have enough reflective surface. If they would make an ANSI class 2 compliant turnout gear then we would not need the vest.
    Wrong.

    Almost all turnout gear meets the reflectivity requirements. Where is falls short is the daytime conspicuousness part of the standard.

    In order to meet the standard your gear would have to be yellow/green or bright orange along with the same reflective stripes you have on it now. It may work great in some communities, but it wouldn't stay either color for very long where I work.
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    I dont see how wearing a reflective vest is going to keep you from getting run over. People dont pay attention to our rigs with all those lights.
    IAFF-IACOJ PROUD

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    Quote Originally Posted by MIKEYLIKESIT View Post
    I dont see how wearing a reflective vest is going to keep you from getting run over. People dont pay attention to our rigs with all those lights.
    I might be wrong, but I think that a portion of the guidelines recommend that we turn off our lights on an accident scene, except for amber lights. The guidelines are for DOT workzones, and if we are on a highway for a certain amount of time we are a temporary workzone. So they suggest that we behave like highway workers and only use amber warning light, cones, signs, etc.......

    Less lights = less rubbernecking according to someone in DC. Not my personal opinion.
    "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." -- Benjamin Franklin

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    Quote Originally Posted by MIKEYLIKESIT View Post
    I dont see how wearing a reflective vest is going to keep you from getting run over. People dont pay attention to our rigs with all those lights.
    It might not prevent it..........but it might.

    Who knows?!?

    Its not hard to put on, its cheap, and its something else to make you visible.

    Why not!?
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    Default ANSI 207 standards and Fire Suppression

    I have searched the new law and I have not found anything that says we can take the vests off during fire suppression operations. Does anyone have any info regarding this issue? These vests have no fire rating whatsoever and the law states that at any point in time there is a response to a federal highway incident that the vest are to be worn. Any information would be greatly appreciated.

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    http://forums.firehouse.com/showthread.php?t=104087
    http://forums.firehouse.com/showthread.php?t=104442

    Bottom line, the idiots who came up with this law made no consideration for this being impossible for the fire service to comply with. They freely admit it is impossible for us to comply with, and in the same sentence tell us we still have to comply with it. When asked how they expect, the mumble and change the subject.

    Also, it is ANSI 107 Class 2 or higher. The 207 standard does NOT meet the requirement.
    Last edited by nmfire; 11-10-2008 at 04:42 PM.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MarcusKspn View Post
    I might be wrong, but I think that a portion of the guidelines recommend that we turn off our lights on an accident scene, except for amber lights. The guidelines are for DOT workzones, and if we are on a highway for a certain amount of time we are a temporary workzone. So they suggest that we behave like highway workers and only use amber warning light, cones, signs, etc.......

    Less lights = less rubbernecking according to someone in DC. Not my personal opinion.
    This is bureaucratic bullshyte!

    I want every fracking emergency light operating on the rig so the morons can see us from far, far away.... and the single amber strobe and arrowstick at the rear of the apparatus won't do diddly on the highways where we respond.

    If there is a night work on a highway here,, it is lit up like daylight, along with the Mass State Police cruisers with their lights on at the detail.
    ‎"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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    I guess you could park the apparatus properly so nobody gets hit. This would require training across the country and maybe some type of country wide sop for highways. Instead, we will try and dumb everyone down and give them a false sense of security. If you dont park properly, it doesn't matter what you are wearing. They dont hit fire trucks because they cant see them. Its because they aren't paying attention. No vest will prevent this.

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    Maybe I'm looking at it wrong, but I don't see this as some kind of legislation that is set forth to screw fire departments. We all know there are those departments out there that will not take the measure to ensure their firefighters are protected unless there is a law stating so. The same goes with some firefighters out there. I honestly don't see why there's such a big fight over something that's designed to improve our (including LEO's and EMS personnel's) safety on the highways.

    This is, in my opinion, merely a law that sets forth that if you're in traffic, you wear the appropriate PPE. It's just like OSHA telling you that you'll wear an SCBA in IDLH environments or bunker gear when fighting fire.

    This is really simple, even if the geniuses that wrote the verbage of the law didn't write it correctly for firefighting. If you're operating in traffic, you wear a vest that makes you visible. You can park apparatus as best as it can be parked and some idiot will still make it through. You've also got the factor that someone is going to step out of the protected area. Hell, it may be the engineer at the pump panel.

    If you're not already aware, when we are working a scene on a highway, we are obligated to establish a work zone after the fire, life safety, and hazardous materials threats are mitigated (per the MUTCD). If you're fighting a car fire, you're not to the point of having to establish a work zone and are not yet to the point of being required to don a traffic vest. No one is going to send someone to jail because they didn't wear a shrink-wrap vest while suppressing a vehicle fire, especially when we have regulations set forth to address what we do and do not wear when fighting fires.

    As far as the lights, I've not heard that. There are people/departments/organizations that are making a push for less emergency lights operating on traffic incidents. I believe it's Plano, TX that has their rigs set up where when you activate the emergency brake, the headlights and red/blue lights shut down and only ambers are activated. They feel it's safer, as do a number of other groups. It's not about the scene not being lit, it's about making it less destracting.

    The USFA has published a report titled "Emergency Vehicle Safety Initiative" that you can either order for free or download. It explains the theory behind a number of things that appear to be up and coming in the apparatus world, including the lights.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Catch22 View Post
    Maybe I'm looking at it wrong, but I don't see this as some kind of legislation that is set forth to screw fire departments.
    Oh you're absolutely right. Their intention was not to screw us. However, their incompetency and inattention to what they were doing is screwing us by accident.

    Their intentions were great. And do believe that anyone anywhere in the fire service exposed to traffic should be wearing a Class 2 vest. But this law is beyond logic when it comes to us.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    I think everyone needs to remember the vest is just one part of the standard. The worry of the firefighters who are doing the actual fire attack wearing vests that are not flame resistant really shouldnt be that big of a deal. They should be protected by proper placement of fire apparatus, traffic control measures to include signs, road cones, someone (law enforcement perferrably) directing traffic. Catch22, is correct from the class and videos on respondersafety.com show, you are only required to wear them after a certain amount of time where you will set up a work zone. Our dept has a policy that the firefighter doing fire attack do not have to wear the vests, due to the fact they will be working in a shielded area. Now whether or not that makes us compliant or not i dont know.

    As for the emergency lights on the trucks, on our truck that responds as a ''traffic control'' unit, this truck sets up, up the road to warn people of the incident ahead. Shutting off all the lights except the arrow stick makes the arrow stick more visible, and the motorists will be better able to see the arrow stick showing them to move left or right! If you have 4 trucks and 3 cops, and 2 ambulances and everyone has every light going thats not going to tell the motorist approaching the accident what lane to be in, its just going to blind and confuse them!!! Believe me, ive seen both used, and even as a firefighter when i approached the ''old school more lights the better'' it was confusing as heck! When coming up on a accident where just a couple trucks had lights goin and cops were using arrowsticks or bars was so much better. I could actually see the responders on the ground, so if someone stepped out i could move over further, or brake, or do something.

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    Quote Originally Posted by firefighterbeau View Post
    Our dept has a policy that the firefighter doing fire attack do not have to wear the vests, due to the fact they will be working in a shielded area. Now whether or not that makes us compliant or not i dont know.
    Big negative. Anyone doing anything anywhere within the right-of-way regardless of other traffic control measures is required to be wearing one. They define the right of way as the road and the dirt/grass/whatever along side it. That being said, I agree with your way of doing it. There is no practical way to comply with their inane regulations so we have to make it up as we go along as usual.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RFRDxplorer View Post
    It might not prevent it..........but it might.

    Who knows?!?

    Its not hard to put on, its cheap, and its something else to make you visible.

    Why not!?
    Just curious, but how easy is this vest to put on when you are wearing a SCBA at a car fire on the highway?
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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    Even though this thread started out quite a while ago it's good to see some active discussion and awareness about the subject of roadway incident safety and the new Rule 634.

    There are problems for the fire service with the current wording of Rule 634. It is a Rule with good intent but it was written with little input from the fire service however; the fire service also has to take some responsibility for not participating in the rule making process. It is NOT appropriate for firefighters engaged in fire attack operations to wear high-visibility vests that were not designed for use in proximity firefighting. Additionally, the ANSI 107 standard contains wording in the preface that clearly indicates that ANSI 107(2004) was not written with emergency services in mind and that more appropriate standards (i.e. NFPA) are available to provide guidance for firefighter personal protective equipment.

    The Federal rule cannot be changed or withdrawn, but the revision process currently underway for the Manual of Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) can be used to “fix” the problem. Comments on revisions to the MUTCD had to be submitted by July 31, 2008. The Emergency Responder Safety Institute (ERSI) (www.respondersafety.com) and several other fire service organizations have developed and submitted suggested wording for revisions to the MUTCD to correct the conflicts created for fire departments working on Federal-aid highways. It will be sometime in late 2009 before those changes take effect. What can fire dept’s do in the meantime?

    It is important to keep in mind that the Emergency Responder Safety Institute, OSHA, NIOSH, the U.S. Fire Administration, The International Association of Fire Fighters, the U.S. Department of Transportation and the National Fire Protection Association all SUPPORT AND ENCOURAGE the use of high-visibility vests for emergency services workers when operating on roadways where they are exposed to vehicle traffic and not directly exposed to heat, flame, fire or hazardous materials. It is also important to keep in mind that the intent of the new Federal rule is to decrease the likelihood of worker injuries/fatalities caused by being struck by vehicles, which is a primary goal shared by the fire service.

    We have posted a suggested plan of action for fire departments on our website (www.respondersafety.com) at: http://tinyurl.com/6jd2rg

    And as one of the other forum comments indicated, it is important to remember that the high visibility vests are only one component of an overall approach to making roadway incident scenes as safe as possible for our personnel. Be sure to evaluate all of your FDs strategies and tactics for roadway operations. After all, the roadway has become the second most dangerous place for Firefighters/EMTs/PD Officers to go to work everyday. We need every advantage to even the odds as much as possible while working near traffic.

    Jack Sullivan
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    "Firefighters responding to calls, need to operate as if someone is trying to run them over..." - James Joyce, Former Commissioner, Chicago Fire Dept.
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    I have a better question. If someone can't see all the flashing lights and big red trucks what makes anyone think they will see this vest?

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    FDsafetymentor's summary is pretty much spot on.

    There is nothing you can wear to prevent the blind, drunk, or distracted people from hitting whatever is in front of them. Defensive tactics such as blocking lanes with big huge fire trucks is the only way to prevent them from hitting you and me. The idea behind the vests is to make us stick out more to the 80% of other drivers who are not blind/drunk/distracted.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    Default new rule

    Is there anyplace online to read this full rule without purchase? NFPA has a "Real Reader" free access. Is there one for ansi standards??

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    ANSI isn't the one making this rule. The federal department of transportation made it. If i can find the full text somewhere, I'll post it. ANSI 107 Class II is the standard the DOT's rule is requiring us to meet.... even though we can't....
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    I get the wonderful task of telling my board of commissioners all about the new regulations and standards that I find. Most of the time they say that the government is just trying to do away with the volunteer. I long ago gave up on telling them it's to keep us safe. Now their gripe is that they don't get a PERSONAL letter describing what the "new" standards are. So for my next meeting I'm trying to find an on-line or print way for them to be able to read for themselves. It's almost as if they don't believe me and think I come up with this stuff cause I think it's cool!!

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