Famed oil well firefighter "Boots" Hansen dead at 93

Famed oil well firefighter "Boots" Hansen dead at 93
Pioneering oil well firefighter Asger “Boots” Hansen, Jr. passed quietly at his home in Fort Myers, FL on June 16, 2019 at age 93, according to an obituary posted by a Florida funeral home. A native of Houston, TX, Hansen was the second of two children born to Asger and Mary (Kornmayer) Hansen. Soon after leaving school and having reached his seventeenth birthday, Hansen enlisted in the U.S. Navy at the height of WWII. Always in search of adventure, he volunteered for the submarine service, the most hazardous duty in the navy. After training at Pearl Harbor, he was placed aboard U.S.S. Nautilus (SS-168), which had been given the dangerous assignment of carrying men and supplies from Australia to guerilla fighters in the Japanese-held Philippines. After the war, Hansen returned to Houston and joined his father in the sign painting business. On weekends he would hang out at the local stock...
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CSB issues final report into fatal gas well blowout – calls for safety change from regulators, trade associations and companies

June 12, 2019, Oklahoma City, OK – Today, the US Chemical Safety Board released its  final investigation report  into the blowout that fatally injured five workers at the  Pryor Trust gas well  located in Pittsburgh County, OK. The CSB’s final report identifies a lack of regulations governing onshore drilling safety as well as shortcomings in safety management systems and industry standards utilized by the industry. The report calls on regulators, industry groups, the state of Oklahoma and companies to address such gaps. The CSB’s report determined that the cause of the blowout and rig fire was the failure of two preventive barriers that were intended to be in place to stop a blowout. Those were the primary barrier—hydrostatic pressure in the well, produced by drilling mud—and the secondary barrier—human detection of gas flowing into or expanding in the well and activation of the rig’s blowout preventer. The report explains that unplanned...
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Connecticut working to contain Farmington River pollution from firefighting foam spill

windsor Booms surround potentially hazardous firefighting foam that was spilled at a Bradley International Airport hangar over the weekend and eventually reached the Farmington River in Windsor. The cleanup is continuing and authorities are warning people not to eat fish from the river or touch any remaining pockets of foam. (Department of Energy and Environmental Protection photo.)
Windsor, CT - State environmental officials are continuing efforts to contain potentially hazardous chemical pollution in the Farmington River resulting from the accidental spill of fire-fighting foam at a Bradley International Airport hangar.
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Perimeter Solutions Establishes Sales Presence in Middle East & India

Gaber-Gular Tamer Gaber Sandeen Gular
St. Louis, MO - Perimeter Solutions, one of the world’s leading producers of fire retardants, foams, and water enhancing gels for managing wildland, industrial, and municipal fires, today announced the appointment of industry veteran Tamer Gaber as Regional Sales Representative for the Middle East and Sandeep Gulur as Regional Sales Representative for India. Mr. Gaber entered the fire protection industry in 1999 serving in technical and sales management roles for Cairo, Egypt based International Security and Safety Systems Co. (ISS).  ISS is a major contractor, manufacturer and supplier of firefighting and fire protection equipment in the Middle East.  A seasoned special hazard practitioner, Tamer brings more than twenty years’ experience to Perimeter Solutions having worked for Gamewell, FCI and Notifier – Honeywell Fire Safety MEA. In his new role Tamer will be responsible for sales and business development of AUXQUIMIA® and SOLBERG® brand foam concentrates and SOLBERG foam suppression systems. With...
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New Hampshire sues 3M, DuPont and others over contaminated water

The state of New Hampshire sued 3M Co., DuPont and six other companies this week for allegedly polluting that state's drinking water with a class of PFAS chemicals once widely used to make nonstick coatings, fire fighting foams and a host of consumer products. To read the entire article, CLICK HERE
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Firefighters tackle live-fire rail car loading rack training project during Chevron corporate fire school

SnapShot41 Firefighters attending the Chevron corporate fire school in May 2019.
Brayton Fire Training Field in College Station, TX was the scene of the May session of the Chevron corporate fire school, the last of three sessions conducted during 2019. A video showing the firefighters tackling the live-fire rail car loading rack project has been posted to the Industrial Fire World YouTube channel at .
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Exxon/TEEX partner on new emergency response course tailored to pipeline and storage tank incidents.

IMG_6794 Storage tank firefighting project at TEEX.
SPRING, Texas – ExxonMobil Pipeline Company and Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) today announced the establishment of a new emergency response training course specifically designed to train firefighters on how to safely manage the challenges experienced during liquid pipeline and storage tank incidents. ExxonMobil has provided TEEX with a $200,000 grant that will fund the development of the program and the participation of 150 firefighters in the coming year. TEEX, a leader in administering emergency response training, will oversee the program and work with ExxonMobil emergency response experts to develop the pipeline and storage tank training curriculum and exercises. The course will be offered at TEEX’s Brayton Fire Training Field, one of the world’s top training facilities, located within the emergency preparedness campus in College Station, Texas. Three sessions will be offered for up to 50 participants at each session: Aug. 17-18, 2019; Oct. 19-20, 2019; and Jan. 11-12, 2020....
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Chemical Safety Board dispatches investigators to probe Illinois plant explosion

waukegan2 Lake County Sheriff's Office
A four-member team of investigators has been dispatched by the U.S. Chemical Safety Board to probe the May 3 rd multi-fatality explosion and fire at AB Specialty Silicones in Waukegan, IL, a CSB spokesperson confirmed Monday. The following report was issued by the Waukegan Fire Department on May 4 th . On Friday evening May 3, 2019 the Waukegan Fire Department was dispatched to the scene of an explosion in the area of Sunset and Northwestern on the northwest edge of the City. First arriving companies noted heavy damage and active fire conditions at the AB Specialty Silicones plant at 3790 Sunset Ave. Crews were also met by and immediately began treating injured subjects from the building. Four subjects were treated and transported to area hospitals. Two to Advocate Condell and two to Vista east. Responding Waukegan Fire crews were quickly overwhelmed and a Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (MABAS) fire...
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Port of Houston fire chief says reports about fire boat breakdown during ITC fire is incorrect

Reports that breakdowns aboard two Port of Houston fire boats contributed to the intensification of the 64-hour Intercontinental Terminals fire in March are incorrect, said Port of Houston Fire Chief William Buck. “There was a temporary reduction in water pressure at the scene,” Buck said. “However, the pumps aboard our fire boats were in continuous operation during that period.” Press releases issued by ITC pinpoint the initial blaze as occurring at 10:22 a.m. March 17. During the next 2½ days, flames spread through petrochemical products in and around 15 storage tanks contained within a common dike. In its coverage of the fire, Industrial Fire World magazine cited press releases issued by ITC on March 19 that blamed the fire’s intensification on “a temporary loss of water pressure and water resources between the hours of 4:00PM and 10:00PM” on March 18. “The loss of water pressure was due to the malfunction of...
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"Systemic failures" led to fatal Chevron Pembroke refinery explosion, UK court told

PEMBROKE The scene of the explosion at the then Chevron refinery, where four workers were killed. Athena Picture Agency.
Swansea, UK - A series of systemic failures led to a fatal explosion at the Chevron oil refinery in Pembroke in 2011, Swansea crown court heard Tuesday (April 30) . TO READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE, CLICK HERE
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Five water pollution charges filed in March terminal fire in Houston

ITCablaze Intercontinental Terminals fire in Houston
HOUSTON – Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg announced that her office filed five environmental criminal charges Monday against Intercontinental Terminals Company (ITC), whose Deer Park refinery tanks caught fire on March 17.   “People living in Deer Park and the other neighboring residential areas near ITC’s plant deserve protection too,” Ogg said.  “When public health is at risk, it’s a public safety concern.”  Following the fire, the company’s makeshift dike broke, sending large (and still unknown) quantities of xylene and benzene, highly toxic chemicals, into Tucker Bayou which flows directly into the Galveston Bay. The Environmental Crimes Division’s review of the evidence demonstrates that the water pollution in Tucker Bayou was at criminal levels from March 17 through March 21, establishing probable cause to believe that the company should be criminally charged for each day it violated the law. “The discharge from the ITC fire into Tucker Bayou is a...
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CSB calls on EPA to update HF study in wake of the 2017 Husky refinery fire

The US Chemical Safety Board released a letter  April 24 calling on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), to review its existing Hydrofluoric Acid (HF) study to determine the effectiveness of existing regulations as well as the viability of utilizing inherently safer alkylation technologies in petroleum refineries.  CSB Interim Executive Kristen Kulinowski said, “In the last 4 years, the CSB has investigated two refinery incidents where an explosion elevated the threat of a release of HF.  Refinery workers and surrounding community residents are rightly concerned about the adequacy of the risk management for the use of hazardous chemicals like HF.  The EPA should review its 1993 HF study to ensure the health and safety of communities near petroleum refineries utilizing HF.”  HF is a highly toxic chemical that can seriously injure or cause death at a concentration of 30 parts per million (PPM), which is used in about fifty of the U.S.’s...
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IFW publisher named to National Fire Heritage Center's Hall of Legends

HallOFlegends National Fire Heritage Center's Hall of Legends, Legacies and Leaders inductees.
Industrial Fire World publisher David White was among six new members of the National Fire Heritage Center’s Hall of Legends, Legacies and Leaders to be inducted during April ceremonies at FDIC International 2019 in Indianapolis, IN. The NFHCF includes the National Fire Heritage Archives, the National Fire Museum System, and the National Fire Heritage Foundation. Established in 2010, the HLLL includes prominent fire service leaders who have made significant contributions to fire protection who have been a member of the fire service or fire protection disciplines for at least 25 years and who are known/recognized in the national/international fire service arena. This year’s inductees include: David White is widely respected for his influence on municipal and industrial fire protection education, training, and standards and for bringing industrial fire and emergency response into the forefront with the municipal and volunteer fire service. He has impacted the knowledge and leadership development of thousands of...
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Former worker pleads guilty to arson in Martin Marietta fire

Raymond-Curtis Raymond Curtis
WJON ST. CLOUD, MN -- A St. Cloud man has pleaded guilty to starting fires which caused more than $2.6-million in damage at the Martin Marietta granite quarry in Waite Park. TO READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE, CLICK HERE.
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Houston chemical fires won’t spur new laws, for now

HoustonITC In this March 18, 2019 file photo, a plume of smoke rises from a petrochemical fire at the Intercontinental Terminals Company in Deer Park, Texas. Organizers say an annual event marking the Battle of San Jacinto and re-enactment of the fight for Texas independence has been canceled amid continuing cleanup from the Houston-area chemical plant fire. The Texas Parks & Wildlife Department says the San Jacinto Battleground State Historic Site in La Porte remains closed and the April 21 ceremony is canceled. The Battleship Texas site also remains closed.
Houston Chronicle After three chemical fires ignited in a three-week period in the Houston area — spewing plumes of noxious black smoke into the air for days, shutting down schools and sending entire cities indoors to shelter in place — lawmakers say it’s too soon to know whether new laws are needed to improve prevention or emergency response . TO READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE, CLICK HERE
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Pharmaceutical company plagued by supply problems after China plant explosion

Yancheng 62 killed in Yancheng chemical plant explosion
FiercePharma An explosion at a chemical plant in China that killed 62 people not only exposed weaknesses in China’s safety oversight, it exposed weaknesses in the global ingredient supply chain. The disruption from the blast has exacerbated shortages for Swiss pharma and chemical supplier Lonza. TO READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE, CLICK HERE
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U.S. Chemical Safety Board to investigate deadly fire at Texas plant

The U.S. Chemical Safety Board said Wednesday it will be investigating the KMCO chemical plant fire in Crosby, which killed one person and left two others injured. TO READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE, CLICK HERE
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Dwight Williams comes out of retirement to take a key role in the ITC extinguishment

Dwight Dwight Williams
By ANTON RIECHER/IFW EDITOR Rumors regarding the retirement of Dwight Williams, one of the leading figures in large-volume flammable liquid storage firefighting, have been greatly exaggerated if the March 20 th extinguishment of the massive Intercontinental Terminals Co. fire in Deer Park, TX is any indication. “Well, I guess I lied,” Williams said. Williams, who stepped down as head of Williams Fire and Hazard Control in September 2011, took a major role in the joint effort to put out the stubborn 64-hour blaze that spread through petrochemical products in and around 15 storage tanks and unleashed black smoke visible in satellite photographs stretching as far west as Austin. US FIRE PUMP ESTABLISHES ITSELF AS MAJOR INDUSTRIAL RESPONDER - CHECK OUT THE SPRING ISSUE OF IFW MAGAZINE He ranked the Deer Park emergency as among the worst in a career that includes the M/V Jupiter tanker fire in 1990 in Michigan, the...
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Louisiana fire company praised for extinguishing Texas plant fire

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards praised Louisiana-owned US Fire Pump for their efforts to help contain and extinguish a petrochemical plant fire that had been roaring for nearly two days in Deer Park, Texas. TO READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE, CLICK HERE ................................................. LA PORTE, Texas; Thursday, March 22, 2019 – (UPDATE) – Tanks in the west side of the containment area have re-ignited. ................ The U.S. Chemical Safety Board will investigate the recent fire at the Intercontinental Terminals Company (ITC) site in Deer Park, TX. CSB investigators will start interviews next week and plan to be on site for several days to document the scene and collect evidence. The massive fire, which began on March 17 th,  engulfed 11 above ground storage tanks containing a variety of hydrocarbons, resulting in multiple orders for community members to Shelter in Place.  ------------------------------------ LA PORTE, Texas; Thursday, March 21, 2019...
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78 killed in explosion at Chinese chemical plant

easternChina Hundreds of rescuers have been dispatched to the scene of the facility run by Tianjiayi Chemical
Yancheng, China - The death toll from a chemical plant that exploded in eastern China rose to 78 as rescuers continue to discover bodies among the rubble. TO READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE, CLICK HERE
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