The Chelsea Fire Department took delivery of 43 new self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) units this week from Scott Technologies. The Scott Safety Air-Pak AP-75 units will replace the departments SCBA units currently in service, which are more than 10 years old.
The department was awarded a $200,000 grant through the Department of Homeland Security Urban Areas Security Initiative program, which was used to purchase the new equipment.
“The new SCBA units will allow the department to meet the 2013 NFPA safety standards,” stated Acting Chief of Department Robert Houghton. “The new units are equipped with an integrated Personal Alert Safety System (PASS) which will sound a loud audible alert if a firefighter is in distress.”
The devices will automatically activate when the firefighter turns on his air supply prior to entering a hazardous environment. If the device does not detect motion for a certain short period of time, typically 15–30 seconds, the alert will sound indicating the firefighter is possibly injured or otherwise incapacitated.
The units are also equipped with new face pieces which offer protection to firefighters in almost every respiratory application, including exposure to chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) agents.
The department is in the process of training personnel on the new equipment and hopes to have the new units in service over the next couple of weeks.