Demand for escape face maks and life safety equipment that is capable of protecting untrained people from chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear inhalants was increasing among civilians over the world. This demand was furthered by the anthrax attacks around the US.
Companies which saw the marketing potential of this raising concern and demand for personal protection started to sell escape safety masks to the general public. Some governments around the world understood the performance of these safety products in response to terror attacks and their importance in times of war.
Gas mask hood is a life safety equipment similar to other safety product concepts as a gas mask. A translucent airtight bag seals around the head of the wearer while an air filter held in the mouth connects to the outside atmosphere and is used to breathe. Smoke hoods are intended to protect victims of fire from the effects of smoke inhalation.
Smoke hoods present on aircraft, also called Protective Breathing Equipment, typically generate oxygen for anywhere from 30 seconds to 15 minutes. The oxygen is kept in a closed circuit, usually thanks to a tight neck seal. A scrubber system may be present to reduce the levels of carbon dioxide and is breathable for around 20 minutes. When the oxygen supply ends, the hood will begin deflating and must be removed to avoid suffocation.
High-quality smoke hoods are usually built from heat-resistant materials and can withstand relatively high temperatures. The most important part of the smoke hood is a filter that provides protection from the toxic byproducts of combustion. Almost all designs utilize several forms of active charcoal filters and particle filters to filter corrosive smoke such as ammonia and chlorine, as well as acidic gases such as hydrogen chloride and hydrogen sulfide.