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Results: 22
Revisiting the 2015 Vancouver Port Hazmat Incident

Interoperability Issues Complicate Electronic Data Transfers

An emergency responder is assigned to handle the radiological monitors at a hazmat incident. Several different brands of monitors are in use. Even those made by same manufacturer may be different models with modified operating instructions.

October 1, 2019

Hazmat: Notifying John Q. Public

When the big bell rings it is "all hands on deck" to load up and get underway. We have to remember the most important element, namely communication with John Q. Public.

October 1, 2019

What, Where, and How Much?

Unfortunately, even the most sophisticated detection and alarm systems have one inherent drawback: no alarm is of any value if no one is around to hear it and respond appropriately.

July 1, 2019

Having Fun Teaching Hazmat Training

For hazmat training to be absorbed into the brain as both information and hands-on skills it has to be interesting and fun. How do you achieve that?

January 1, 2019

Innovation: An American Hallmark

From the time that some long forgotten firefighter discovered that a hollowed out log fitted with a piston and a restriction at the end could be used to direct a stream of water onto the heart of a fire, firefighters have been involved in the evolution of emergency response tools and equipment.

January 1, 2019

Chlorine Gas: Munition or Commodity?

I have revisited chlorine in the hope that my small contribution may engender a heightened sense of urgency and increased awareness of the risks of allowing this material to get into the hands of those who would do us harm.

October 1, 2018

Adding an Extra 'P' for Proper PPE

The system of selecting PPE by the four levels of A-B-C-D is a quick and simple method of describing what responders wear when working with hazardous materials.

January 1, 2018

Revisiting the Gulf Coast Hurricanes

In the aftermath of any major catastrophe it is all too easy to find fault; fault with anybody or anything, just so long as we can fix blame.

January 1, 2018

Checklist for Buying Radiation Detectors

I want to share some thoughts about how we could perform better as emergency responders. A 40-year career has given me plenty of experience in all aspects of this business, good and disastrous. Let’s start with equipment purchases.

October 1, 2017

The Evolution of Personal Protective Equipment

It behooves those in charge of emergency response operations to try to strike a balance between providing protection, the physiological cost, and the technical limitations of carrying out monitoring protocols.

January 1, 2017

Hazmat Teams: Public-Private Interface

Many public first responders will default to the, “I am taking command of this incident” mind set without recognizing or acknowledging that there are already trained responders on site who are actively engaged in a mitigation operation.

January 1, 2017

Innovation: Necessity, Ingenuity, and Invention

The man who established the first formally organized volunteer fire department in 1736 also invented bifocals, wrote and printed Poor Richard’s “Almanack,” studied electricity and helped draft the Declaration of Independence.

October 1, 2016