The performance of firefighters' helmets was evaluated. Eight models of firefighter helmets, the American Sport Company 1000, the ED Bullard Company models 503A and 1003E, Cairns and Brothers, Incorporated models 770 and 880, the Federal Sign and Signal Corporation FH/2, the MSA 454698, and the National Safety and Supply Company 800 were tested for compliance with the American National Standards Institute standards by NIOSH. Tests applied consisted of the load cell and Brinell evaluation of impact resistance, penetration resistance, insulation resistance, flammability, water absorption, weight, and check/in. Check/in involved examining the component construction, suspension adjustment, crown clearance, and size range and adjustment. All but two models, the American Sport 1000 and the Federal FH/2, showed conformance with the standard requirements. The Bullard models 503A and 1003E, the Cairns 880, and the MSA 454698 passed the tests. Three of the helmets advertised as meeting the standard requirements fell short in one respect or another. The author notes that the load cell procedure for testing impact resistance is more accurate and repeatable than the Brinell method. It should be used in place of the Brinell procedure.
NIOSH, U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, Public Health Service Center for Disease Control, Morgantown, West Virginia, 40 pages, 7 references