Avon Protection showcased a new respirator-helmet combination at this week's Counter Terror Expo in London. The HMK150 provides chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) protection. It is designed for use in situations such as riot control, where there may be both violence and toxic gases present.

Amongst the armored vehicles and bomb disposal units, a piece of headgear might easily have been overlooked, but the HMK150 is an innovative piece of kit. It combines Avon's HM50 face mask with the Schuberth P100N helmet.

Schuberth is a German manufacturer of safety helmets, described by Avon as "world leading." The company has produced protective helmets for Formula One drivers including Michael Schumacher, Felipe Massa and Fernando Alonso. The P100 range of helmets protects against blunt force, penetration, chemical, fire, ballistic and fragmentation threats, and is used by many police forces.

The HM50 face mask is available in single or twin port models. The twin port model allows users to switch between filtered air and an auxiliary source, such as an air canister. The mask is designed for prolonged use with a minimum of heat build-up, breathing resistance or carbon dioxide re-inhalation. It can be put on without having to remove the helmet, so as to maintain head protection at all times. It has a scratch and impact-resistant visor that is optically corrected to ensure judgement is not impaired.

By combining the two products into the HMK150, it has been possible to increase the level of potential protection provided. "Its simple rapid donning connects the full face respirator to the helmet to deliver continuous head and respiratory protection," explained John Penton, Avon's sales director for Europe & Asia Pacific.

Avon supplies equipment to organizations including the UK Ministry of Defence, the US Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force and Special Operations Forces.

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