§ Mr. Stephen
asked the Lord Privy Seal how many gas-masks have been issued under the Air-Raid Precautions Act; whether those that were issued last September are still considered as an efficient protection; and the period for which those masks may be considered to retain their protective efficiency?
§ Sir J. Anderson
The number of civilian respirators issued to local authorities up to the 31st May, 1939, is over 46,000,000. Unless they have been damaged by ill-usage, the civilian respirators issued in September, 1938, will still provide complete protection against gas. The period for which they may be expected to retain their protective efficiency naturally depends upon the care with which they are kept; but, if they are handled in accordance with the instructions issued, and stored in a cool, dark and dry place, the face pieces should retain their efficiency for a number of years and the filters for an indefinite period.