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Helmet Saves A Life – Scottsburg, IN

Bullard Fire Helmets are tough. And, so are the amazing firefighters who wear them every day. The durable shell and inner liner are designed and tested to meet and exceed NFPA 1971, Standard on Protective Ensemble for Structural Firefighting and Proximity Firefighting, Pertaining to Structural Fire Helmets. Chief James Richey of Scottsburg Fire & Rescue in Indiana USA experienced this toughness first-hand in a recent structure fire. Check out his story!

Structure Engulfed

Chief Richey responded to a house fire around 2 am. When his crew arrived, the structure was fully engulfed, and they were unable to enter the structure to fight the fire. They had a couple attack lines in use; one deployed to a roof dormer. At this height outside the structure, Chief Richey handled the hose. When the hose suddenly slipped, he clamped down with this arm to stop the hose, but the resulting pressure forced him to release the nozzle to keep from falling backward. That's when the nozzle began to free-fly and whipped back to hit Richey directly in the front brim of his helmet.

My partner was at the top of the ladder, and I was on a small section of shingles just outside the dormer. Working in an awkward position trying to twist for a good angle on the flames, the line slipped and I was able to stop it by clamping with my upper arm.

The pressure of the line started to make me twist and slide backwards into my partner. At that point, I knew we were both going to fall if I did not release the nozzle, so I did. Once the nozzle was released, it began to free fly and whipped back and hit me directly in the front brim of my helmet with intense force,” recalled Richey.

A Blow to the Helmet

When he had the chance to inspect his helmet afterward, he saw that it had cracked down the center of the brim and down the side. “I have since looked at the helmet several times, reflecting on the crack and how significant of a blow that actually was. And, to think what that hit could have possibly done to my skull.” said Richey. “Other than a slight case of whiplash and a mild headache, I was unharmed.”

Richey further noted, “I just wanted to pass on my thanks to your product for successfully doing the job it was created to do.”

Thanks to Chief James Richey for sharing his story. We're proud to design and build helmets that continue to help protect those who risk so much everyday.

Helmet Protection and Inspection

Kudos to Chief Richey for inspecting his helmet after that blow. Learn more about inspection and replacement of your fire helmet here:

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