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Emergency Escape Breathing Apparatus (EEBAs)

Understanding Emergency Escape Breathing Apparatus

Faced with danger, every second counts. Especially in emergency oxygen-deprived, confined spaces or toxic environments where the air is not safe to inhale. When you're in toxic ambient air, Premier Safety provides emergency escape respirators that will protect you against dangerous or toxic gas, fumes or smoke.

What is an Emergency Escape Breathing Devices

Emergency Escape Breathing Devices are devices that provide respiratory protection when escaping an oxygen-deficient environment, gas leaks, or vapors above 0°F(-17.78°C). It is NIOSH/MSHA approved with the necessary features to provide emergency air supply for the user to escape to safety from smoke, burning engine control room, halon fire system discharges, or chemical spills. This life-saving appliance is meant for a quick escape from immediate surroundings, therefore low maintenance (no expired air) and easy to deploy .

Emergency escape respirators come in two types; Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health (IDLH) and Non-Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health (Non-IDLH). From the names, you can gather that depending on a scenario or industry you work in, a particular type of emergency escape breathing device will be recommended. 

Why Eebd is not used for fire fighting?

 An EEBD is a supplied-air or oxygen device exclusively intended for escape from a hazardous conditions and shall not be used as fire fighting equipment by firefighters to combat fires, entering oxygen deficient voids, or tanks. A self contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) with a fire system safety code should be utilized in this kind of situation.

Components of Emergency Escape Respirators

Essentially, emergency respirators perform the same function, but their components may differ based on the environment you work in. For instance, a non-IDLH breathing device may simply be made of a mouthpiece and filter element to sieve contaminants out of the air. That said, most IDLH emergency escape breathing devices will come with more parts. These include:

Gas Cylinder 

Mostly made of aluminum to keep the weight low, the compressed air cylinder can keep at least 15 minutes of breathable air supply. Some models come with a pressure-reducing valve to ensure they operate safely and reduce maintenance needs. Using a breathing air compressor and suitable adapter, you can refill most air cylinders.


This part of the emergency respirators protects the head and neck area from open flames and also prevents the hair from trapping harmful gases or smoke. It is made of fire-resistant material to serve this purpose.

Visor or Clear window

For maximum practical visibility, a clear part is allowed in the emergency respirator. Some emergency escape breathing devices use transparent polyurethane to combine the hood and visor to provide a 360° view when wearing a respirator.  

Air controls 

This comprises the air level gauge and on-off switches. This will let you know if the gas is flowing and when it's time to recharge. When in use, some emergency escape breathing devices have an alarm to warn about critical air levels, an urgent warning to emergency evacuation in case the user hasn't already.

Selecting Emergency Respirator Breathing Time

You can buy emergency respirators that can serve five, ten, or fifteen minutes. This period will be determined by your budget and specific use. For instance,  workers in closed spaces like ship decks will need more time than those working out of small buildings.

Uses of an Emergency escape breathing device

We place emergency respirators within easy access within many companies where there is a risk of toxic contaminants or oxygen deficiency. You may need a respirator if you work in:

  • Enclosed spaces
  • Pharmaceutical
  • Shipping
  • Food and beverage
  • Chemical industries
  • Petroleum processing and drilling plants
  • Precaution in some delicate operations 

Benefits of using  emergency escape breathing device EEBD 

Emergency escape respirators are made with the user in mind. Manufacturers package them compact to make them simple to install in your plant or organization. You will find the sizes flexible for all body sizes and shapes. Combining visibility and ease of use, an emergency respirator gives the user the autonomy to make it to the escape route without breathing complications.

They are always ready for use and they can be worn and functional in a matter of seconds. Once you slip the hood onto your head, secure it around your neck to prevent leaks, just turn the gas on. The ease of use not only makes it user-friendly but also reduces the need for supervision and extra training to use it.  

Emergency respirators to save the day

The emergency respiratory is a short-term measure meant to be part of your emergency procedures. It may not eradicate a need for emergency services, but it will buy you precious time, which could be the difference between saving a situation and disaster. This is a lifesaver if you are working in closed quarters, like ships, labs, etc. 

Premier safety is your global safety partner. Talk to us to find out how you can take your workplace safety to the next level. Ask for your free consultation and shop for all your favorite emergency escape respirators brands in one place.