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What are NFPA Standards? What are the rules and regulations?

What are NFPA Standards? What are the rules and regulations?

What are NFPA Standards?

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is an international non-profit organization consisting of 50,000 members and 9,000 volunteers who work with the organization through its 250 technical commissions, dedicated to eliminating fire, electrical, and other types of hazards.


NFPA Rules and Regulations

More than 300 consensus codes, standards, and guidelines are published by NFPA. These codes and standards are designed to reduce fire-related risks. These codes and standards are managed by over 250 technical committees made up of around 8,000 volunteers [1].


NFPA Diamonds & NFDA 704

Emergency personnel use “Safety Square” and “Fire Diamond” to quickly identify potential hazards posed by hazardous substances. This information helps to determine the appropriate equipment and procedures that should be followed during an emergency response.


NFPA Rules & Coverall Protection

Below are the related rules you need to take a look at when purchasing a coverall.



Standard on Vapor-Protective Ensembles for Hazardous Materials Emergencies and CBRN Terrorism Incidents (2016 Edition)

This is one of the highest safety standards on the books, calling for fully encapsulated chemical protection covering 100% of the wearer’s body.

When the rule is applied, your PPE gears are best suited with the following types of equipment:

  • A self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA).
  • The chemical barrier must be applied, this includes a wide range and includes liquids and gas, chemical warfare agents (CWAs), toxic industrial chemicals (TICs), and liquids.
  • Protection must be gastight, resist flames and stand up to pressure.

This standard conforms to EPA/OSHA Level A.

You might be interested in our articles about “coverall standards“.



Standard on Liquid Splash-Protective Ensembles and Clothing for Hazardous Materials Emergencies (2018 edition)

This standard is for protective coveralls that have penetration barriers against liquids (not vapors). As long as the garment passes the appropriate tests, it can be either one- or multiple-piece.

Garments can either be certified as a single piece or as an ensemble with specific respirators and other accessories. The standard is consistent with EPA/OSHA Level B.



Standard on Protective Ensembles for First Responders to Hazardous Materials Emergencies and CBRN Terrorism Incidents

This standard is divided into four classes:

  • Class 1 ensembles protect emergency responders in situations that involve liquid or vapor chemical hazards in concentrations that are immediately dangerous to life or to health (IDLH). These environments require self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA).
  • Class 2 ensembles offer limited protection for first responders. This standard is applied where liquid chemical or vapor hazards are higher than IDLH, These situations also require SCBA equipment.
  • Class 3 ensembles offer limited protection for first responders when hazard levels fall below IDLH levels. This allows for the use of non-self-contained air-purifying respirators.
  • Class 4 ensembles offer limited protection for first responders in situations where particulate hazards are at lower concentrations than IDLH.  This class should protect from biological and radiological particulate. Air-purifying respirators can also be used.



Standard on Flame-Resistant Clothing for Protection of Industrial Personnel Against Short-Duration Thermal Exposures from Fire

This standard is essential for manufacturers and certifying agencies, this standard protects workers from flash fire exposure and injury by specifying performance requirements and test methods for flame-resistant fabric and garments. Garments are subjected to tests that gauge their thermal insulation, heat stability, flame engulfment resistance, and the stability of the components (threads, zippers, etc.). For garments to be compliant, they must have a minimum of a 50% predicted body burn, resist melting, and extinguish flames quickly, and clearly labeled.



  1. List of NFPA Codes and Standards. (n.d.). NFPA. Retrieved August 17, 2021
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