Industrial Fire Journal - Fire & Rescue - Hemming Group Ltd
Distress signal units for the fire ground
Published:  17 October, 2016

Unlike most personal alert safety systems, the new NFPA-complian PASS from Grace Industries does not require an SCBA for its operation – the device can simply be transferred from one piece of protective clothing to another.

This means that the Superpass 5, Superpass 5X and Tpass 5 ensure firefighters can comply with NFPA 1500, the standard that defines how the technology should be used operationally.

The new technology complies with the latest PASS device standard NFPA1982-2013 Edition, and Grace Industries claims it is the only manufacturer to meet it.

The new technology aims to solve the common situation where firefighters remove their SCBA and then continue to work on the fire ground. As most PASS and RF PASS systems are integrated into the SCBA, once the SCBA is removed firefighters are potentially in danger and do not comply with NFPA standards.

Grace’s new RF PASS and Incommand accountability systems also aim to reduce congestion of radio voice channels on the fire ground, which can cause confusion and put firefighters at risk when critical messages are not heard.

The wireless personnel accountability report (PAR) check is a function of the accountability system that significantly reduces radio voice traffic on the fire ground while keeping the incident commander informed of acknowledgements from the crew.

Grace Industries’ President Bob Campman explained: “Radio voice PAR check traffic creates congestion that competes with fire ground voice radio traffic. Our proprietary and patented Automated PAR check replaces the traditional manual PAR check performed on the radio voice channel. The Automated PAR check is now part of our affordable, Automated RF PASS Accountability System, designed to fit the operational needs of both large and small fire departments. Secondly, a standalone PASS or RF PASS solves the problem of limited protection given to only those fire fighters inside the hot zone with SCBA integrated PASS. As required by NFPA1500, now all fire personnel, both inside and outside the hot zone are protected by wearing a standalone Superpass 5, Superpass 5X, or Tpass 5 that does not require the use of SCBA.”