RAE Systems

December 01, 2011 10:01 ET

RAE Systems Teams Up With Fire Smoke Coalition to Deliver Bay Area's First Fire Smoke Symposium

"Know Your Smoke" Fire Smoke Coalition Event Trains and Educates Firefighters on the Dangers of Fire Smoke

SAN JOSE, CA--(Marketwire - Dec 1, 2011) - RAE Systems, Inc. today announced that it has teamed with the Fire Smoke Coalition to sponsor "Know Your Smoke," a Fire Smoke Symposium that provides free training and education for firefighters and others on the dangers of fire smoke. The event will cover an array of topics in smoke exposure and toxicology.

This course for firefighters and first responders will be held at the PG&E Auditorium in San Francisco on Thursday, December 8 from 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. PST. "Know Your Smoke," a Fire Smoke Symposium, is a life-saving event for firefighters and others exposed to fire smoke. Interested first responders can register here

The event will provide firefighters with information from leading experts on Hydrogen Cyanide (HCN) and Carbon Monoxide (CO) smoke toxicology. Topics include fire smoke, air management, atmospheric monitoring, pre-hospital HCN assessment and treatment, as well as the following topics:

  • Fire Smoke: Perceptions, Myths and Misunderstandings
  • HCN: An Emerging Threat
  • Out of Air
  • Aftermath
  • Long Term Health Effects

"There are still a lot of wide-spread misconceptions about the dangers of fire smoke and because we typically see a significant spike in fire related incidents during the holiday season, it's important to increase awareness and provide this resource now," stated Shawn Longerich, Executive Director of the Fire Smoke Coalition. "These events are critical in keeping firefighters and the public-at-large safe and informed about the negative health effects of smoke exposure during a particularly dangerous time of year."

Increase in Holiday Fires Creates Higher Need for CO, HCN Detection
The resulting increase in incident response and exposure for fire personnel, particularly during the holidays puts them at higher risk of exposure to dangerous short- and long-term effects from high CO and HCN levels.

  • According to the National Fire Protection Association, between 2003 and 2008 there was an average of 260 home fires per year that were ignited by Christmas tree related incidents in the home.
  • According to the Center for Disease Control, between 1997 and 2006, there were 30,564 fire deaths and 151,575 fire-related injuries. However, only 1% of those were comprised of burn injuries, and the leading cause of fire death is actually smoke inhalation.
  • The Fire Smoke Coalition also compiled statistics showing that in 2010, there were 671 total deaths in the United States due to smoke inhalation. In the same year, there were 2,037 injuries related to smoke inhalation, 258 of which were reported by firefighters.
  • Effective this year, California law (Senate Bill 183) now requires all home owners to install carbon monoxide detectors aimed at preventing injuries and deaths against the colorless, odorless gas. According to Calif. Firefighters, this will lead to increased calls about CO alerts and alarms that they will need to be prepared for.

"Firefighters are routinely exposed to the toxins contained in fire smoke. This program provides an invaluable resource for continued education on occupational safety and the short and long-term health hazards," said Rob Schnepp, Chief of Special Operations with the Alameda County Fire Department. "The smoke symposium is a great way to learn more about the dangers of fire smoke. With more information, firefighters are better equipped to make good decisions when it comes to operating on the fire scene."

Learn More, See More

1. To register to attend the FireSmoke Symposium, click HERE ( or email Shane Francisco at sfrancisco@ for more information.
2. To learn more about and watch a short video on the FireSmoke Symposium, click HERE (
3. More videos on previous FireSmoke training sessions and use of RAE Systems single gas CO and HCN and multigas gas detection monitors are available HERE and HERE (,

About Fire Smoke Coalition
The Fire Smoke Coalition, a division of the Cyanide Poisoning Treatment Coalition (CPTC), is a 501(c)(3) non-profit comprised of firefighters and medical personnel. The mission of the Fire Smoke Coalition is to focus the required attention and resources on the deadly and life-long consequences of breathing fire smoke by teaching firefighters and first responders how to Prevent, Protect, Detect, Diagnose, and appropriately Treat the exposure if it occurs. Learn more at

About RAE Systems
RAE Systems is a global sensor and wireless-system innovator that designs and manufactures a full line of fixed, portable, handheld and personal chemical-, compound- and radiation-detection instruments. The company's life- and health-saving detectors are built using RAE Systems' proven technology, and are used in 120 countries by many of the world's leading industrial corporations, first responders and government agencies.

The Silicon Valley-based company offers a wide range of rugged, yet easy-to-use monitors that enable continuous, real-time safety- and security-threat detection in nearly every environment, along with wirelessly connected solutions that lead the industry in performance and reliability. RAE Systems' intrinsically safe and globally certified monitors help elevate safety for workers, responders and the public at large, reduce project downtime, and improve incident-response time. Learn more at