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CdnoilRAM 01-31-2010 02:20 AM

Favorite SCBA
Was wondering what SCBA you firefighters use, and which is your favorite?

I'm a fan of the Scott with an AV-3000 mask.

CdnoilRAM 01-31-2010 02:32 AM

Also, just curious, who does your maintenance? Do you guys have a tech in each hall or do you have to send them out for repair? I know that my company has a tech onsite at every plant we work at, just curious what the fire departments do.

MightyBlueRam 01-31-2010 01:56 PM

We use the Draeger Airboss Evolution with the Sentinel display and the Panorama mask. I trained on the Scott when I was in fire fighter academy and it was good. Then I trained on the Draeger and now that's what I like. We carry a RIT pack with a 60 minute bottle on all the pumpers in case we have to pull a FF out.

Our maintenance problem is run in house at one of our stations. We have 2 FF per shift who are trained to do all repairs and fit testing. We get fit tested once a year to make sure our mask works properly and we have the correct fit. The packs are tested once a year also by the "air truck" guys. They use two units, one is a van with spare air bottles and another is a large truck that is set-up to refill bottles at a fire.

RamTech 01-31-2010 01:58 PM

I'm curious if you guys use a filtered/purified atmospheric air or do you use a particular mix for firefighting?

MightyBlueRam 01-31-2010 02:03 PM

What's in the tanks is "air" just like what we breath regularly with no extra oxygen. The filling station filters it to take out any junk and moisture. When we breath the air it's very dry but has no odor or weird taste.

RamTech 01-31-2010 02:06 PM

So it's pretty much the same setup a diver would use up to a certain depth before they start getting into tri-mix and that sort of thing?

MightyBlueRam 01-31-2010 02:20 PM

I don't know too much about the mixes for diving. But basically it's the same setup. We have the tank and a mask. The air goes from the tank through two (1st and 2nd stage) regulators to drop the pressure. At the mask there's another regulator and the final air pressure is a little above what atmospheric pressure is. I believe atmospheric is 14.7 psi and our system pushes 15 psi That's so that when we take a breath, the regulator pushes the air in making it a little easier for us to breath instead of having to suck out the air. The mask regulator also senses when there's a leak in the mask and uses the air to clear the mask so that no smoke enters it.

This is the system we use.

RamTech 01-31-2010 02:28 PM

Cool. Like the positive pressure system we had in the M1A1 that would keep out chemical agents. I used to work at an electrical specialty shop and from time to time the city would bring us their fire trucks to work on. Fascinating machines, especially the big Grumman aerial and ladder trucks. I always made damn sure they were fixed right because it might be my ass they have to come save someday!

MightyBlueRam 01-31-2010 02:39 PM

We have good mechanics at our fire shop. But like anything else, they sometimes can't fix problems with the trucks because of budget issues. They take care of the major problems but sometimes things like air conditioning get a band-aid fix that works for a few days before it needs attention again. Down here, it's not fun riding in a hot truck in the middle of the day.

The truck that I ride on the most has 102K miles on it and for the most part it runs pretty good.

RamTech 01-31-2010 02:47 PM

One of the local stations here was in need of a new truck a few years back but they couldn't get one approved because of the cost involved. The guys obtained the money and refurbished the truck that needed replacing themselves. I think nearly all firefighters have pretty good mechanical abilities.

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