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ISO Meeting – Day 4

Today’s meetings started with a visit to a nearby textile manufacturing facility; a really interesting visit to see the complex process in producing protective fabrics such as those used in our firefighting PPE.   Today’s working groups were WG 4 Hazmat, WG 5 Rescue and a WG 2 item specific to the ISO 11999 ensemble standard.

In WG 5 the progress of a new ensemble standard for water rescue PPE (ISO 5056) was discussed.  Unfortunately due to a change in project leaders and the time it took to find a replacement this new standard hasn’t progressed as expected and therefore it has been decided to restart the process from the beginning as the ISO processes are time-bound.  The good news is that working draft documents are already prepared and we will be able to circulate these to obtain comments shortly.  ISO 18639 (rescue ensemble) is now due for a systematic review and it was agreed that this series of standard will now move into a review.  Therefore we now have an opportunity to add comments to the review process.

In WG 4 ISO 17723-1 ‘Gas-tight, vapour-protective ensembles for emergency response teams’ was discussed and whether the scope of the standard needs to change as it heads into systematic review.  The project lead from Sweden talked through some of the options to expand the scope by incorporating additional requirements used around the world particularly from current NFPA (North American) standards.

And finally ISO 11999-10 RPD for structural firefighting was discussed.  This document completes the 11999 series of standards for firefighting PPE.  As RPD are covered by another ISO committee (SC15) this particular standard will only reference the RPD standard developed in SC15, this being ISO 17420-5.  Interestingly this standards has 2 levels of requirements and requires fire and rescue services to undertake a suitable risk assessment to determine the required level.

Tomorrow sees the plenary session and the recording of all resolutions recommended this week to take each particular standard to its next required stage.  Whilst work will continue on all standards discussed this week outside the meeting cycle the next meetings have now been agreed as to be in February and October 2024.