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Why Are Firefighters Choosing the MSA G1 SCBA?


A firefighter's self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) is their first and most important tool against airborne contaminants. These devices deliver breathable compressed air while simultaneously preventing potentially harmful external air from entering the system. 

Firefighters and other first responders depend on SCBAs when working in areas that can expose them to smoke, toxic gas, or any other airborne hazards, whether facing a three-alarm fire or rescuing workers from a mine filled with toxic gas.

A typical SCBA will have several key components, including:

  • One or more high-pressure cylinder tanks made of durable material, such as aluminum or carbon-fiber composites
  • A carrying frame
  • A pressure regulator
  • A sealed mask with a mouthpiece and connected supply tubes

You’ll find these components in every SCBA on the market, but some manufacturers have become more popular due to manufacturing quality, added features, and industry reputation. 

One increasingly popular option is the MSA G1 SCBA. MSA has been manufacturing safety equipment since it was founded in 1914 and has earned a reputation for reliable, effective, and technologically advanced equipment. Its latest SCBA, the G1, includes all the features you’d expect and includes integrated leading-edge technologies. 

There are other SCBAs on the market, but today, we want to discuss some of the powerful features and accessories available with the MSA G1 SCBA. 

SCBAs on the Market

There are several SCBAs on the market to consider, each with its own advantages and drawbacks. The MSA G1 can help to keep your firefighters safer in today’s dynamic fire environment. It provides revolutionary safety capabilities of today with the ability to be seamlessly updated as technology changes in the future. The MSA G1 integrates modern technologies to improve a firefighter’s capabilities such as long-range radio, connectivity to communication radios via Bluetooth, an integrated thermal imaging camera (TIC), and can utilize Cloud technology to deliver breakthrough fire-scene management capabilities for incident commanders via the LUNAR system. Other brands on the market include the 3M Scott Air-Pak X3 Pro SCBA and the Dräger PSS 7000 SCBA.  One of the many reasons A.J. Stone Company Ltd. stands behind the MSA G1 product line as they are the first manufacturer to provide a platform-oriented safety-as-a-system SCBA. Only with the MSA G1 can you unify your safety system on an integrated electronic platform. MSA works closely with firefighters and rescue teams to ensure product innovations, improvements, and services. 

How to Pick the Right SCBA

How do you go about choosing between the different options on the market? Of course, you’ll want an SCBA that complies with all applicable regulations, but how do you decide between those that meet this baseline requirement? You need to understand a few key factors that will impact how your department uses the equipment, such as:

  • Assess common hazards: What conditions do your firefighters typically face? For example, if toxic gas is a common hazard, you’ll need an SCBA that provides the best protection against it. Additionally, you need to assess the typical working conditions in your region. For example, firefighters who regularly face wildfires will need a lightweight and high air capacity SCBA, while those in major metropolitan areas won’t generally need a high-capacity model.
  • Consider typical shift lengths: How long will they be wearing the SCBA and depending on it for air? Some models, known as closed-circuit SCBAs, filter and recirculate air to provide a more extended protection period. Additionally, weight and ergonomics can become significant factors when working a long shift.
  • Understand maintenance requirements: Every SCBA will require maintenance, but they’ll have different requirements based on their design and features. Make sure you fully understand what’s required to maintain the units and that you have the right tools and skill set to perform it.  AJ Stone offers in house and mobile service options to ensure your SCBA’s are kept up-to-date, and in service.

It's important that you carefully weigh all options, capabilities, and how your firefighters will use SCBA’s in the field. Equipping your fire department with the right SCBA will significantly impact how your firefighters perform their jobs.

Essential MSA G1 SCBA Accessories for Enhanced Protection and Utility

Some of the reasons we stand behind the MSA G1 is the notable improvements that extend the capabilities beyond conventional SCBAs. Some accessories and features that make it such an appealing option include:

  • Emergency Transfill Hose: An optional three feet transfill hose allows firefighters to transfer air between their tanks, which can be lifesaving in dire situations. The hose comes with an easy-to-carry pouch.
  • Adjustable Lumbar: Lumbar support should be evaluated before picking an SCBA and the MSA G1, either a basic option or an adjustable option, with eight different options for adjustable lumbar support. The basic option might be acceptable for your department, but departments in which long firefights are typical will appreciate the adjustable option. 
  • Thermal Imaging Camera (TIC): An exciting new option is an integrated TIC that empowers firefighters with a thermal camera that allows them to identify threats or people in low visibility areas, such as dark or smoke-filled areas. The TIC is integrated with the pressure regulator, meaning it won’t obscure the firefighter’s vision while being readily available when needed. 
  • Noise Canceling Voice Communication System: Firefighters need to communicate with each other regardless of the scenario they face, but heavy breathing and outside noise can make it difficult. MSA’s latest noise cancelling technology eliminates unnecessary noises and provides clear communication.
  • Integrated Technology: Other advanced technologies are integrated with the system, such as Bluetooth, RFID, NIC, and long-range radio, each of which extends the utility of your SCBA.
  • LUNAR: Connect the Dots: The Connected firefighter platform offers products that will transform the way fires are fought. With these products you will have enhanced vision, unmatched situational awareness, and total accountability for everyone on scene.  With this technology, there are various forms of communication going on between the products in the platform. Not only does it offer personal thermal imaging, search and rescue capability, and cloud connectivity, it also seamlessly uses Bluetooth, LUNAR to LUNAR network, LTE, and internet to deliver an experience like no other.

Discover the Latest MSA SCBA Today

The latest MSA G1 SCBA is a significant improvement on the SCBAs we’ve seen for decades. It cost-effectively integrates modern technology to provide more utility and support for those in the line of duty. However, you should still do your research on some of the other leading options to find the perfect solution for your fire department. 

Ready to see why so many people are buying the MSA G1 SCBA? Shop online today or contact our sales team to learn more.