Thread: How do you do what you do?
08-01-2011, 03:34 PM #1
- Join Date
- May 2000
- Wheaton IL
How do you do what you do?
Just a quick question, how is your team activated and what goes on what situation. Also what does your agency consider a HM team response?
The team I'm on covers the northern half of DuPage county, Illinois, about 500,000 residents in a suburban setting. We have 3 trailers and 2 "rapid response squads" We are called out through a mutual aid network MABAS when a stricken jurisdiction requests us. For the amount of industry we have and the amount of highway, rail and even air we have in the area I can't understand why we aren't busier. Also Our system is a bit slow in my opinion, but I'm from a TRT, Water background where time is more than important.
Thanks for the reply
08-03-2011, 01:53 PM #2
We're dispatched like any other units.
We have a main Hazmat unit that is always staffed with four or five. Their station also houses a 4-man quint. All firefighters there are hazmat techs, so the quint might roll with the hazmat on a large enough incident, just to give manpower.
We also have an unstaffed hazmat unit on the south end of the county. It is a heavy rescue chassis, but smaller and with less equipment that the main hazmat. Like our other unit, everyone at the station is a tech. Typically, the tillered aerial would be shut down and the hazmat unit would be put in service.
We also have an unstaffed decon unit, which is a tractor drawn decon trailer. If the decon unit goes, typically everyone from the station housing it will go to set it up and operate it.
Hazmat responses range from natural gas leaks to large fuel leaks/spills, to anything else. We had a full response last shift for a 55-gallon drum of nitric acid that was spilled at a trucking company. The initial dispatch was the closest engine company, hazmat, a battalion chief, and an ambulance, since there were suspected victims. Eventually, we ended up with all of both hazmat stations, and the decon.
For natural gas leaks, it's just an engine, a hazmat, and a battalion. For fuel leaks, same. In fact, most initial dispatches are the same, until someone confirms the product and quantity.
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