Respirator Instructions for WW2 Soldiers

Contributed by Irene

Respirator Instructions for WW2 Soldiers

Tucked inside my late father's Soldier's Service Book, I found this little booklet of instructions on using a Respirator to protect against gas attacks.My father's Service Book was stamped five times to certify that his equipment,(presumably being worn at the time),passed the Gas Chamber tests. Several pages of the booklet detail instructions on how to cope with Liquid Blister Gas,a hazard against which the respirator offered little protection. There is a very stark warning: "One drop of Liquid Blister Gas in your EYE will blind you". Page 11 contains a cartoon to impress on the soldier the vital necessity for following the drill, showing a soldier called Bill, safely returned home to his loving wife , contrasted by a gloomy drawing of an unmarked grave for Charlie, who forgot to carry out the drill. The final page of the booklet simply states - WHEN GAS COMES, KEEP CALM, ACT WISELY, CARRY ON. My father (like many others I suspect) rarely spoke about his experiences in France and the Middle East. For those of us who have never lived through a war situation, it is a grim reminder of the everyday horrors of the situation.

Comments are closed for this object

Most of the content on A History of the World is created by the contributors, who are the museums and members of the public. The views expressed are theirs and unless specifically stated are not those of the BBC or the British Museum. The BBC is not responsible for the content of any external sites referenced. In the event that you consider anything on this page to be in breach of the site’s House Rules please Flag This Object.

About this object

Click a button to explore other objects in the timeline


View more objects from people in Suffolk.

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.