One of the coolest things I have ever received in the mail, ever... arrived at my house a couple of days ago. It was from one of the friends I made here on the FFN, and he is from France, where he works as a professional firefighter. Like many firefighters, we both like fire service related things and are involved with trading things back and forth. What amazed me however, was the functional design that I saw first hand. 

Up to this point, I have only seen photographs of french firefighters wearing a very unfamiliar fire helmet style. To be honest, I blew off the design because they just did not look like fire helmets. After having the chance to actually wear one, I offer the following insight for those, like myself, who never have had the chance to see what our brothers and sisters across the Atlantic wear for head and face protection.

The world just keeps getting smaller... I invite everyone to take the time to get to know others around the world with the spirit of sharing and providing the most up to date training and response information available. We are not alone, we have each other.

Prenez garde à rester en sécurité, (TCSS)


The Casque Pompier (Fire Helmet):

Built in Safety Goggles:


Fire Helmet Protective Visor / Heat Shield:


View Through Fire Helmet Protective Visor / Heat Shield:

Fire Helmet Heat Shield:

05-25-2010 Update: I made direct contact today with MSA and spoke with one of two sales reps that have knowledge of the French Gallet F1-SF Firefighter Helmet. Here's what I learned:

• These "French" fire helmets are manufactured by MSA, which is 100% USA owned and is based internationally out of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 

• MSA bought out the french company Gallet 7-8 years ago, which included this helmet design and manufacturing rights.

• Existing USA style fire helmets are rated to no more than 1500˚F, while this particular style is rated to 1800˚F. Why more? The same technology used by NASA for astronaut helmets visors are incorporated into this design. Both the helmet and face shield reflect the heat, keeping the interior of the helmet cool, with maximum interior helmet temperatures reaching around 95˚F.

• The existing F1-SF helmet does not meet NA standards as mentioned in one of the posts. However, there is such a demand now for this style that MSA is working on providing a NA approved helmet that has the same features but also possesses the necessary impact standards.

• What we are looking at is a glimpse of what the 21st century firefighters are going to be wearing, internationally...

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Yes. Those helmets are functional, and I love functional. Our department looked into it, but I think they were pretty expensive to purchase.

We thought they would work well for vehicle extrication.
I often wondered about those helmets. To me, they just look plain goofy. That said, I suspect they are superior than what we in North America are accustomed to. I do believe there are some departments here in Canada ( in Quebec I think.. also french) that are using those types. I could be wrong, but I thought I saw pictures somewhere.
In my eeensie beeensie lil mind, I prefer the looks of the "real thing" fire helmets. The old traditional style that many depts are going back to, or have never stopped using. Those are the style that was worn when I was growing up, and although I was kind of disappointed to see the newer types had replaced the old style, I still thought even they were cooler than those new fangled things that you just traded. I guess it just takes some getting used to lol
Nice pic by the way.
Luke... I am your Father!

Sorry CBz, that's just what it looks like. ;p
The reason this style of helmet is not used in the USA is because they do not meet US standards for impact protection.

Apparently American firefighters get hit on the head more than they experience severe thermal conditions...
CBz Im not sure if you are playing a Kniht in Shining Armor game or Star Wars. However that being said it look pretty cool. I wonder how hot your head would get on a summer day though
Some traditions are just worth holding on to and the grass isn't always greener on the other side.

While the function and so forth may be there with the European style, there are also several helmets (traditional leathers, traditional style plastic, salad bowl etc) which perform the same functions. There are pros and cons out there for everything, but forgive me if I'm not going to jump on the bandwagon of this helmet being better. Maybe I'm a traditionalist, but this isn't like a flat SCBA which has more advantages than the ones now, but I'm not a fan of these helmets and prefer to keep some traditions.

BTW...these are available in the states. My friend's former volly dept got them and I've seen them up close. Not a fan.
It is kind of cool looking but that is about it.... I would not want to were one. When the hot water or coals come down on you what is to stop it from rolling down your coat?
When the hot water or coals come down on you what is to stop it from rolling down your coat?

The flap on the back of the helmet.
Back in the late 80's, we were given some of these to field test. I like them. The scba mask snapped to the helmet also. Great fit, lite
Eww, look at that hairy monster! I've seen these helmets firsthand as well. The only functionality that I like is the built in/flip down safety goggles, which is becoming more and more available in North American styles, both traditional and modern. A fellow firefighter of mine just purchased a Cairns traditional(not sure of the exact model number) with these, and man, are they slick. Very functional, easy to use with gloves on, etc.
The heat shield he pictured.
I just saw these helmets at the fire expo and I like them. I think a department in my area has, or is in the process of whiching to these and I think we will look at them on our next purchase of helmets

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