Fire escape hoods

Fire escape hoods provide a person with 15 minutes of clean, filtered air in a smoke-filled environment.

How do fire escape hoods work?

A fire escape hood is worn over the head. The tight seal around the hood prevents any smoke from getting in. So the only air you’ll breath comes through the filter, which removes the toxic gasses found in smoke – providing clean, safe air for 15 minutes.

Find out how to put on, fit, and breath in a fire escape hood.

They also feature an anti-fog visor, which will allow you to see better in a hot, foggy environment.

They don’t require any maintenance or servicing, and if unopened have an eight year shelf-life.

When we will use them

Fire escape hoods can be used when we’re trying to get someone through a smoke-filled area, or when we need someone to stay in a smoky environment until we can rescue them. They buy us more time.

All of our firefighters are trained in how to assess a situation and work out if a fire escape hood would be helpful.

However, we’ll never force you to wear a fire escape hood. Our firefighters will explain what the hood does, and how to put one on, but you can choose not to.

How to put them on

The hoods are very easy to put on, and fit everyone, from small children to adults.

If you need to put on a fire escape hood a firefighter will give you as much help as you need, but it’s very simple.

If you’re wearing glasses, you’ll need to remove them first. But don’t worry – a firefighter will help guide you if needed.

If you wear a hijab, turban or other headwear, you’ll need to remove it to put the hood on. We’ve spoken to cultural and faith leaders about this, and they’ve told us that it’s allowed in an emergency situation.

All you need to do is pull the hood on over your head. The firefighter will then gently pull the front of the hood away, and then put it back in position. This will create a seal. To test it you’ll be asked to put your hand over the filter and breathe. If a vacuum’s created, it’s fitted correctly.

What happens next

Once you’re wearing a fire escape hood, you may be led to safety, or a firefighter will stay with you until a safe exit route is made.

The 15 minutes of clean air is monitored, and if you’re approaching the end of the 15 minute period, your hood can be swapped for a new one.