OHS Code Explanation Guide

Published Date: July 01, 2009
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Part 18 Personal Protective Equipment

Section 237 Fire fighters

Helmets used by structural and wildland firefighters have characteristics or features specific to the type of work being performed. Protective headwear meeting the requirements of the referenced NFPA standards has the required characteristics or features.

For compliance purposes, protective headwear meeting the NFPA standards must bear the mark or label of a nationally accredited testing organization such as CSA, UL, SEI, etc. Without this mark or label, the headwear is not in compliance even if the manufacturer’s label and product literature states that the headwear complies with one of the referenced standards. The marking also indicates the standard that the headwear complies with.

NFPA Standard 1971 (2007 edition), Protective Ensemble for Structural Fire Fighting, includes headwear requirements for protection against top and lateral impact, resistance to penetration, electrical exposure, flame resistance, heat distortion and several other characteristics. The headwear must be equipped with a faceshield or goggles, or both, ear covers, and fluorescent and reflective trim.

NFPA Standard 1977 (2005 edition), Protective Clothing and Equipment for Wildland Fire Fighting, includes headwear requirements for protection against top impact, resistance to penetration, electrical exposure, flame resistance, heat distortion and several other characteristics. The headwear must have retroreflective markings i.e. markings that reflect light directly back to its source, and its weight is limited to 570 grams (20 ounces).