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Effect of Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) on Heat Loss in Structural Firefighter Turnout Suits

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The purpose of this research was to determine the effect of firefighter's self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) on heat loss through clothing ventilation openings in structural firefighter turnout suits. Passive and active ventilation openings were fabricated into structural turnout suits and tested with and without the SCBA to determine the effect on clothing ventilation. Turnout suits were evaluated under two test conditions on a sweating manikin to measure thermal and evaporative resistance. A predicted total heat loss (THL) value was calculated for each suit and compared to a control turnout without ventilation openings. A significant improvement in heat loss was measured when the SCBA harness, mask, and thermal hood were removed from the structural ensemble. Results showed the SCBA harness significantly decreased heat loss in firefighter turnouts.
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Keywords: COMFORT; FIREFIGHTER; PROTECTIVE CLOTHING; TURNOUT SUIT; VENTILATION

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2017

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