CFA has announced a new helmet for eligible volunteer firefighters with both Breathing Apparatus and Search and Rescue competencies.
Funded through the $60 million provided by the State Government as part of its Fire Services Statement, about 5000 of the new helmets are planned to be distributed by the end of 2019.
CFA Chief Officer and CEO Steve Warrington said the Pacific F15 Premium jet-style structural helmet was selected after an open-market, competitive tender process.
“This helmet has specific benefits for internal structure firefighting attack and we’re excited to be able to provide it to eligible volunteer firefighters who are trained in using breathing apparatus and performing search and rescue functions,” he said.
The helmet includes a one-touch visor, a full-coverage internal face shield, integrated helmet torch, comfort harness and liner, and flame-resistant multi-layer neck flaps. It also has a reinforced composite shell and an advanced polymer chassis.
Pac Fire Australia, which is also the current supplier of CFA’s volunteer wildfire and structural helmets, is the successful tenderer for the supply of the Pacific F15 Premium.
“We evaluated 4 shortlisted helmets as part of the tender process. This included conducting live field trials with volunteers at West Sale, Penshurst and Bangholme,” Mr Warrington said.
Field trials included hot fire drills, cross-sectioned with search and rescue components, where participants trialled the helmets while responding to structure fire and motor vehicle accident scenarios. The trials took into consideration each helmet’s design, useability and comfort.
“I want to thank all the volunteers who helped assess the helmets – your feedback was vital in CFA choosing the right helmet for our people; one that is modern, innovative and effective,” Mr Warrington said.
“We will now work with our regions and districts to identify the eligible volunteers with BA and Search and Rescue competencies who will receive a new helmet.”
Mr Warrington said all existing helmets used by CFA volunteers will remain fit for purpose and compliant with relevant Australian Standards.