Scott Sight: A review after 1 week at HazMat training.
Recently, a friend of ours, Sonny Coffey, from Lake Charles, Louisiana, was asked to test out one of the new Scott Sight masks. These masks come equipped with a mounted thermal imaging camera, and viewfinder inside of the mask. This allows the user to see in real time a thermal image in whichever direction they are looking.
Lucky for us, Sonny was on his way to LSU-FETI to attend their “Advanced HazMat Technician” course for the week. We asked him to give us a little perspective from the HazMat side, on what he thought of the mask, to which he obliged.
Scott Sight fits just as other Scott face pieces do. The biggest concern he had with the fit, was how the weight would be distributed with the camera mounted to the side. Surprisingly, the camera only weighs a few ounces, and the weight is distributed well. He was able to use the mask with little or no effect from added weight.
How it worked
To activate the system, you must individually turn on the viewfinder inside the mask, as well as the camera on the outside. The two will automatically sync, and according to Sonny this took no longer than 25 seconds each time. Since the two pieces are seperate, they each are powered by AAA batteries which were easy to install.
Sonny first used the mask in a non fully encapsulated CPC, and was assigned to decon detail. The mask was able to be taped around with little to no issue. He noted that in some circumstances as responders entered his decon line, he was able to visibly see the contrast of material on the CPC to be deconned.
However, when used inside of the fully encapsulated suits, there’s not much to be seen. For the most part the viewfinder is “greyed” out, which was to be expected.
The main thing he enjoyed about the mask was the fact that a critical tool was able to be taken out of his hands, but still put to use. There was a small amount of lag on screen, but the performance was right up there with any other TIC you can grab off the truck.
All in all, invest in some for your department if you have the money. The future of PPE is here, let’s put it to use.
Sonny is an emergency responder for a gulf coast refinery. He also is a municipal volunteer who has multiple years of live fire instruction experience.