I started in the fire service in 1975 and am still full time employed in the fire service. I started when
we did not have full turnouts, it was a Jacket, helmet and boots that could be pulled up. I have seen
lots of new equipment over the years and we have benefited as an industry from many great ideas.
My 1st several years of brush fires we normally wore our station pants and tee shirts. We did not
yet have "brush jackets" and our turnout coat was too much. Our other brush fire PPE for many
years was a cotton bandana. Most of us carried a red or blue one. We would wet it down if
conditions were really bad. Then about the time I made Captain some of our guys bought
themselves a Hot Shield. Many times firefighters that had purchased these were told they couldn't
wear it for a number of reasons.... all dumb.... when you consider the bandana was the alternative.
Since then my department has issued and even mandated the use of a Hot Shield mask. I was
recently deployed on a major wildland fire. Twice in a 14-day window I feel like my Hot Shield mask
made the difference between holding my position vs possibly getting injured I truly believe the
protection that this device has afforded me has lengthened my career, kept me safer and allowed
me to work in tough conditions which saves more homes in the interface. Thank you Hot Shield
Name, rank, and department withheld per Department policy
My name is Tom Forest. I and my department purchased Hot Shields after seeing them at a fire equipment trade show back in 1996 (by the way, that original Hot Shield still works). I used it a lot. Saved my lungs on more than one occasion. I was in an urban brush fire that was going well for us which suddenly roared to life with 25 foot flames with blast furnace wind and heat right in our faces. If we hadn't had the Hot Shield masks we might not have made it out in retreat. My yellow fire-resistant jumpsuit was severely singed and my gloves took some damage but we survived unharmed. The flare-up made the front page of the local newspaper with a picture of us just as the wall of flames erupted. As a former academy instructor here in Utah, I have told trainees and firefighters that "smoke inhalation is not a right of passage into the brotherhood of firefighting, its a lunatic disregard for one's own safety when we have PPE available to avoid such common hazards."
You can read about Brooke Linman’s story and her successful recovery from the Harris Fire Burnover of October 2007 in the Fall/Winter Edition of Burn Institute Beacon Newsletter, Volume 44, No.2
Dear Hot Shield USA,
Hi, my name is Brooke Linman and I was one of the firefighters burned in the recent fires down here in San Diego. I had facial, ears and shoulder burns but what everyone noticed right away was how my lower face was not burned at all.
As you can guess I had my Hot Shield HS-2 on…..I got it about 4 years ago…. I didn’t have it completely on when I made an emergency call for help but had tucked my face into it when I ran through the flames. I did receive inhalation burns and was put in a coma for a couple of weeks because of swelling but my lungs healed quicker then anyone expected and I am convinced your product kept me from receiving even worse injuries then I did. I have supported your products since wearing it in the 2003 firestorm and now your product is even a part of the investigation report and we are hoping our department will add it to our standard gear. Thank you just doesn’t even start to express my gratitude. Thanks again.
FF Brooke Linman
I have worked in the fire service for over 30 years. I have used the Hot Shield on many brush fire incidents. It is outstanding PPE on threatened structure protection assignments and brush fires. The Hot Shield HS-2 provided me excellent protection against smoke, embers and extreme winds. It does not inhibit my radio communications. I highly recommend the Hot Shield HS-2 for every firefighter on wildland incidents.
LA County Fire Dept.
My name is Danny Silva and I have been a firefighter for 11 years. I started with the good old bandana just like most of us. I went to a fire equipment show about 9 to 10 years ago and saw the Hot Shield HS-2 and and bought one. By far the best thing I have ever purchased for my job. I use the Hot Shield a lot and I have been in some very smokey & hot fires right next to guys coughing with their bandannas and can’t breathe well, while I’m working hard too, but I’m breathing just fine. After the fire is over, I tell ‘em “Get a Hot Shield”! Thank you for making the Hot Shield. It’s a great product and I will never go into a brush fire without it.
To whom it may concern, This letter is long overdue, but I wanted to take a moment and tell how happy I am with my Hot Shield HS-2 Face Mask. I had only worn the product to a few vegetation fires, but instantly noticed how clear my breathing air was while working. Another feature I didn’t expect was the protection my lower face felt from flying embers and debris.
While on an incident, I loaned my HS2 to another Captain who also commented on the total protection of the face mask. Without a doubt, this has to be one of the best PPE products on the market for Firefighters. Large or small incident, I will continue to use and recommend the Hot Shield mask for face and respiratory protection.
Fire Captain, Northern California