2021 NFPA 1801 Standard - Current Edition
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  • Description

    Help ensure thermal imagers used in fire fighting are ready to perform as intended by referencing NFPA 1801, 2021 edition.

    Thermal imaging cameras are integral tools for fighting fires. This cutting-edge technology assists personnel in locating occupants, assessing the severity of the fire, identifying how it might potentially spread, and monitoring members operating in environments immediately dangerous to life and health (IDLH). When transmitted to the incident commander, the data collected helps guide tactical decisions and can ultimately reduce damage and loss.

    NFPA 1801, Standard on Thermal Imagers for the Fire Service, offers provisions for helping to ensure this sophisticated equipment meets minimum performance requirements. The standard discusses the design, testing, certification, product labeling, and image quality of new thermal imagers and also covers any accessories, replacement parts, and enhancements.

    The 2021 edition is revised to reflect the latest thermal imaging camera strategies, technologies, procedures, best practices, research, and development.

    It is critical that thermal imager manufacturers and testing and certification authorities have access to the most current criteria. This edition of NFPA 1801 features a variety of changes, including:

    • Updated Chapter 4 test matrices for stand-alone and integrated thermal images
    • Addition of an amended spatial resolution source target to Chapter 8
    • Revised region of interest selection figure
    • Editorial changes throughout the standard

    Help make sure personnel have the advanced tools to meet fireground challenges safely.

    NFPA 1801, Standard on Thermal Imagers for the Fire Service, provides confidence to fire service personnel in emergency incidents that equipment will function as designed. Stay up to date and compliant by purchasing your copy of the 2021 edition. (Print, 56 pp., 2021)

  • Table of Content (2021 Current Edition)

    NFPA® 1801 Standard on Thermal Imagers for the Fire Service, 2021 Edition

    Chapter 1 Administration
    1.1 Scope.
    1.2 Purpose.
    1.3 Application.
    1.4 Units.
    Chapter 2 Referenced Publications
    2.1 General.
    2.2 NFPA Publications.
    2.3 Other Publications.
    2.4 References for Extracts in Mandatory Sections. (Reserved)
    Chapter 3 Definitions
    3.1 General.
    3.2 NFPA Official Definitions.
    3.3 General Definitions.
    Chapter 4 Certification
    4.1 General.
    4.2 Certification Program.
    4.3 Inspection and Testing.
    4.4 Annual Verification of Product Compliance.
    4.5 Manufacturers’ Quality Assurance Program.
    4.6 Hazards Involving Compliant Product.
    4.7 Manufacturers’ Investigation of Complaints and Returns.
    4.8 Manufacturers’ Safety Alert and Product Recall Systems.
    Chapter 5 Product Labeling and Information
    5.1 Product Label Requirements.
    5.2 User Information.
    Chapter 6 Design Requirements
    6.1 General Design Requirements.
    6.2 Power Button.
    6.3 Failure Mode and Effects Analysis (FMEA) for Thermal Imagers.
    6.4 TI BASIC Operational Format.
    6.5 TI BASIC PLUS Operational Format.
    6.6 Thermal Imager Viewing Area.
    Chapter 7 Performance Requirements
    7.1 Thermal Imager Performance Requirements.
    Chapter 8 Test Methods
    8.1 Image Recognition Test.
    8.2 Vibration Test.
    8.3 Impact Acceleration Resistance Test.
    8.4 Corrosion Test.
    8.5 Viewing Surface Abrasion Test.
    8.6 Heat Resistance Test.
    8.7 Heat and Flame Test.
    8.8 Product Label Durability Test.
    8.9 Cable Pullout Test.
    8.10 Effective Temperature Range Test.
    8.11 Field of View (FOV) Measurement.
    8.12 Thermal Sensitivity Test.
    8.13 Durability Test.
    Annex A Explanatory Material
    Annex B Informational References
  • Prior Editions

    2018 Edition

    Help fire fighters meet fireground challenges safely with thermal imagers designed, tested, and certified to the 2018 edition of NFPA 1801.

    NFPA 1801, Standard on Thermal Imagers for the Fire Service contains minimum requirements for image quality, design, performance, testing, and certification of new thermal imagers for the fire service. Fire fighters use these imagers during emergency incident operations to assist them in locating victims and fire as well as possible avenues of fire extension while also assisting in accountability of members while they are operating in the IDLH. The information provided by the thermal imager may be relayed to the incident commander to assist in making tactical decisions.

    In an update to the Standard's scope, the 2018 edition now also applies to the design, performance, testing, and certification of thermal imagers originally certified to the 2013 edition of NFPA 1801, allowing upgrades that may incorporate replacement parts, components, and/or software to be certified to the new 2018 edition. This edition of NFPA 1801 also has a new design requirement for an audio/video recording indicator if so equipped.

    Other revisions impact thermal imager technical requirements, such as:

    • Added battery locking mechanism testing, so that where the use of a tool-secured feature is relied upon to meet ANSI/ISA-12.12.01 and this feature is not automatically engaged, the camera will inform the user by way of a message that prevents normal use of the camera.
    • All imagers are now required to pass a 2-hour run-time conducted with video and image capture functions active.
    • The thermal imager must display a useful image within 30 seconds of power being applied (battery installed).
    • The thermal imager must display an icon in the form of a red dot inside a green circle when recording audio/video.
    • Camera resolution of 76,800 pixels (320 x 240) is now a minimum requirement.
    • A sensor/image refresh rate of at least 25 Hz is required.
    • Only specified symbols can be displayed at power-up.

    Staying up-to-date with the latest NFPA 1801 is essential for thermal imager manufacturers and testing and certification authorities to ensure that equipment will perform as expected on the job. (Print, 56 pp., 2018)


    2013 Edition

    Help fire fighters meet fireground challenges safely with thermal imagers designed, tested, and certified to the 2013 edition of NFPA 1801.

    The 2013 NFPA 1801, Standard on Thermal Imagers for the Fire Service contains revised minimum requirements for the design, performance, testing, and certification of new thermal imagers for the fire service. These imagers are used by fire fighters during emergency incident operations to determine where victims are located, where the fire is, and avenues of fire spread so they can provide such data to the incident command.

    In the 2013 edition, Chapter 7 and Chapter 8 have undergone significant changes, including:

    • The image recognition test that testing laboratories use for thermal imagers has been replaced by a spatial resolution test that will produce consistent, reliable values.
    • Image color testing was removed from Chapter 8, and the section related to thermal sensitivity testing was revised so that the test would yield more repeatable and reproducible results.

    This important Standard is vital for thermal imager manufacturers and testing and certification authorities to ensure that equipment will perform as expected on the job. (Softbound, 41 pp., 2013)

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