03-08-2005, 08:54 PM #1
- Join Date
- Mar 2003
Hazmat Placards Must Stay on Tank Trucks and Rail Cars
The idea of the Federal Government ordering removal of hazmat placards from railroad tank cars and tanker trucks strikes me as not only extremely dangerous, but insane as well. Without the information cues that a placard provides, how are first responders supposed to know what the heck they are dealing with. Here in Wyoming County, we have a major rail main line operated by Norfolk Southern passing through Castile,Silver Springs,Warsaw, and Attica and a derailment involving dangerous goods could involve the entire departments in these communities, plus Perry, Gainesville, and departments from neighboring counties under the mutual aid system. How is the incident commander supposed to properly protect his men and women and the affected communities if he does not know what he is dealing with. The pretext of preventing terrorism on the rails by the Bush Administration, to me, demonstrates this Administration's utter contempt for emergency first responders despite all claims to the contrary. At a hazmat incident involving,say Silver Springs,NY with Perry,Castile,Warsaw,Gainesville, Genesee Falls, just about all other depts. in Wyoming County plus some Erie,Genesee, and Allegany Counties assisting, an explosion from an overturned tank car would result in a death toll among firefighters from these departments rivalling that that FDNY took on 9-11-01. Not only that, but each fire chief responding with his men and women to such a hazmat incident is not going to have time to break out a laptop and search for the information on the chemical substance involved, especially when a placard on a tank car or highway tanker will give the basics needed to deal with the incident and protect the emergency personnel and community. Such matters are no place for the President of the United States, or anyone else, for that matter to be playing Russian Roulette with people's lives by even suggesting such an insane idea of removing placards from rail and highway vehicles transporting dangerous goods. With such ideas coming from this Administration, it seems to me that George W. Bush is no friend of the emergency first responders and other personnel, just a lying sack of s--t. I could not have come up with a better way where a hazmat incident could wipe out an entire volunteer fire deparment and that is what removal of placards from tank cars and tank trucks will do sooner or later the moment an incident commander is confronted with something he has no idea of how to deal with, now that he had been deprived of a quick reference source of information to check against the Emergency Response book. Time is not only money, but lives as well.
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