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According to updated studies by the Health and Safety Executive in the United Kingdom, wartime helmets and gas masks might pose a health risk to students due to traces of asbestos. Although the wartime items have always been a hit in the classroom, there is a real concern that pupils and teachers could be coming into contact with asbestos each and every time they try on one of the historical artifacts.
Schools use the historical items as a prop to teach about World War I. After a report by the Health and Safety Executive, however, schools might be packing up the memorabilia for good to protect students from asbestos exposure. In fact, the report says arrangements should actually be made to destroy the historical items, unless they can be contained in a secure display or decontaminated by a licensed contractor.