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)

CBz


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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yeah i was looking one over last night and the functionality decreases the more i look at it. The way the helmet fits over your head with an air pack on does not look effective. Number one how can you hear to communicate? for two i stopped wearing my chinstrap a while back because of an incident i had i fell partially through a floor and my scba caught the floor joist pushing up into my helmet and my helmet pushed down on my mask causing its seal to be broken. This helmet would be a nightmare trying to reseal your mask chances are you would have to completely remove the helmet. number 3 with the full facepiece down it looks like it would be hot!! Good luck to all you advocates having them but for me, ill keep my traditional helmet, communication is a must on the fireground.
Thomas,
There is debate as to if or how much influence was derived from the iriquois but regardless, there was as much or more taken from the way the greek city states ruled and governed. So if you're looking for a strictly 'american' foundation you are going to be disappointed.
How are you determining that it's not taught enough in schools?
The French? Sorry. I LOVE my country. Not to say the lovers of french $#!t don't...but let's be serious! We are the international superstars of firefighting...PERIOD! They take cues from US. I have an inherent mistrust of everything French. Sorry if anyone is offended. But they turned their back on us for the last time in my opinion.

As far as the helmet goes...the only benefit I see is the missing brim in the back not hitting the bottle. In reality, the changes should be made to the bottle. This has been manifested in a new lower profile pack that was beta tested recently by the Prince George's FD. Look into it. That back brim has saved me a world of discomfort in sleet, rain, ice, snow, and the sun.

Morever, the benefits do not outweigh the power of tradition in this case. BTW...metro helmets are lame.
i'm not too much of a fan of the french helmets for 2 reasons, first off our helmets have been around since ben franklin and secondly, were firefighters not NASA astronauts or star wars storm troopers
Kevin,

I like the way our helmets look too, but I have to disagree with you on your reason for dismissing the Euro style helmet.

The North American Style helmet has changed considerably since Ben Franklin's day, both in shape and materials they are made of. Old-style helmets has a very high peak and a very long bill on the back, whereas today even our "traditional style" helmets have a short crown and a shorter brim on the back...and Metro style "turtle shell" helmets were only invented a few decades ago. Of ocurse Ben had no clue about composites and fiberglass.

Second, no, we are not astronauts, but just because the Euro style helmet looks similar to a space helmet doesn't mean it isn't at least as functional as the helmet you're more used to.

You're not the only one, but it seems like a lot of people dismiss new technology simple because it doesn't look like what you're used too...even if it may out perform what you use today.

This thread seems to be the old axium in action: "Two hundred years of traditional, unimpeded by progress!"

TCSS

Greenman
Nothing wrong with Star Wars...they must have gotten some things right...they fly in space on a regular basis and we don't. To dismiss something because of its 'looks' and not its functionality is a common human error. I did learn by reading that these helmets are not worthy of our impact standards (easy fix, in my opinion).
Nothing wrong with Star Wars...they must have gotten some things right...they fly in space on a regular basis and we don't. To dismiss something because of its 'looks' and not its functionality is a common human error. I did learn by reading that these helmets are not worthy of our impact standards (easy fix, in my opinion).
I agree with the function over looks. If these things heat up, that means they can fog up and they look like a bitch to de-fog...
Nothing wrong with European...they must have gotten some things right...most of us descended from their outcasts...To dismiss something because of its 'looks' and not its functionality is a common human error. I did learn by reading that these helmets are not worthy of our impact standards (easy fix, in my opinion).
Fogging can be a pain, but I've had problems with the ESS goggles fogging up as well with the traditional lid. Personal preference for me is a pair of saftey glasses and I carry several with me. I trust those moreso than any facepiece or goggles I ever worn and that goes back to middle school shop class. I prefer the safety glasses and personally don't think any integrated faceshield, facepiece, etc is an improvement. If in a fire, i have my facepiece on which takes care of the issue, and I don't have to worry about a faceshield etc falling in front of my mask and creating a visibility issue.
I likes this! I totally agree. Traditionally, we also used to use horses and pump water by hand...traditionalists can do that sort of stuff. I will stick with my 7000 litre/min pump, thank you.

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