News Icon

News: Army, National Guard firefighters 'suit up' for HAZMAT training

Story by Sgt. Katryn TutonSmall RSS IconSubscriptions Icon

Army, NG Firefighters 'suit up' for HAZMAT Katryn Tuton

Firefighters seal simulated radioactive waste containers during the Hazardous Materials Technician Course culmination exercise at Fort Bragg, N.C., Oct. 18, 2012. The two-week course brought together active-duty firefighters from Fort Drum, N.Y., Fort Stewart, Ga., National Guardsmen from Massachusetts, and civilian and active-duty firefighters from Fort Bragg. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Katryn Tuton/Released)

FORT BRAGG, N.C. – A delivery driver, unfamiliar with Fort Bragg, has backed into another delivery truck just inside the Knox Street Access Control Point and containers with hazardous markings are leaking onto the road. The mixture of chemicals is creating a dense cloud and two soldiers are injured nearby.

Within minutes, fire trucks arrive on scene and cordon off the area. Seeing the cloud and immediately assessing the situation, bright yellow and blue suits are unpacked and hurriedly donned by fire personnel.

For 22 firefighters from Army posts along the Eastern seaboard, this is their Hazardous Materials Technician Course culmination exercise at Fire Station 1 Oct. 18.

The two-week course brought together active-duty firefighters from Fort Drum, N.Y., Fort Stewart, Ga., National Guardsmen from Massachusetts, in addition to civilian and active-duty firefighters from Fort Bragg.

“This training greatly impacts the installation as well as the region,” said Sgt. 1st Class Adam Law, fire chief for 95th Engineer Headquarters Detachment on Fort Bragg and organizer of the event. “Once they are trained and certified they could be utilized to conduct technician level mitigation techniques at any hazardous materials incident.”

The HAZMAT certification is an additional skill for the firefighters, allowing them to respond to a wider variety of emergency calls.

“Because we work on shift side by side with the DOD civilians, this training allows us to get more hands on experience with them,” said Pfc. Brad Lemke, a firefighter with 520th Engineer Detachment on Fort Drum. “And being so close to the border with Canada, it prepares us for anything that might happen.”

As some firefighters put on chemical protective suits, others begin setting up a decontamination area for anyone exiting the contaminated site. Once it is complete, an initial team of three firefighters enter the “hot zone” to assess the situation and pull out the victims.

The instructors from Louis F. Garland Department of Defense Fire Academy at Goodfellow Air Force Base, Texas watch as the team checks chemical detection devices and give them hypothetical readings.

After the victims have been transferred to the decontamination area, the instructors grade the HAZMAT team’s ability to assess, stabilize and control the site.

To increase the difficulty level, some of the leaking containers don’t have labels, and the team must search the truck cabin for shipping documentation.

“Found it,” radios one of the firefighters back to the command team. From inside his suit, the firefighter reads off the list of chemicals and the three-man team proceeds toward the decontamination site to have their suits sanitized before taking them off.

The student command team looks up proper procedures for chlorine and two types of pesticides and a second HAZMAT team is sent in with a plan of action.

Within an hour, all leaking barrels have been sealed or contained within larger storage containers and the exercise is complete.

“Being able to get everyone here from multiple installations to do a joint training exercise so they can learn from each other, how each detachment performs at their location… it’s invaluable,” said Law.


Connected Media
ImagesArmy, NG Firefighters...
U.S. Army Staff Sgt. James Languirand with the 513th...
ImagesArmy, NG Firefighters...
A Soldier records U.S. Army Staff Sgt. James...
ImagesArmy, NG Firefighters...
Firefighter Matt Pugh, of Fire Station 1 on Fort Bragg,...
ImagesArmy, NG Firefighters...
A Soldier helps U.S. Army Staff Sgt. James Languirand...
ImagesArmy, NG Firefighters...
Firefighters wearing Level A chemical protective suits...
ImagesArmy, NG Firefighters...
Firefighters evacuate a role player simulating an injury...
ImagesArmy, NG Firefighters...
Firefighters evacuate a role player simulating an injury...
ImagesArmy, NG Firefighters...
Massachusetts National Guardsmen provide decontamination...
ImagesArmy, NG Firefighters...
Firefighters from Fort Bragg seal leaking hazardous...
ImagesArmy, NG Firefighters...
Firefighters seal simulated radioactive waste containers...


Web Views
308
Downloads
0

Podcast Hits
0



Public Domain Mark
This work, Army, National Guard firefighters 'suit up' for HAZMAT training, by Katryn Tuton, identified by DVIDS, is free of known copyright restrictions under U.S. copyright law.

Date Taken:10.18.2012

Date Posted:10.24.2012 15:24

Location:FORT BRAGG, NC, USGlobe

Hometown:CAMP EDWARDS, MA, US

Hometown:FORT DRUM, NY, US

Hometown:FORT STEWART, GA, US

Hometown:MILFORD, MA, US

More Like This

  • Firefighters with the Fort Bragg, N.C. Department of Fire and Emergency Services trained on the Ahura FirstDefender which is the newest edition to the bases hazardous materials defense here, March 14.
  • Firefighters from the 386th Expeditionary Civil Engineer Squadron were covered from head to toe in neon-green protective suits Nov. 12 as part of a training scenario involving potentially dangerous chemicals at an undisclosed air base here.<br />
<br />
  • Soldiers from 3rd Platoon (Hazardous Response Platoon), 172nd Chemical Company, 2nd Chemical Biological Radiological Nuclear Battalion conducted hazardous material reconnaissance exercises May 7 at Yakima Training Center, Wash., with supervision by observer/controllers from Civil Support Training Activity, U.S. Army North.
  • The Alaska National Guard’s 103rd Civil Support Team, in conjunction with the Anchorage Fire Department, conducted a joint hazmat training scenario yesterday in Anchorage near Merrill Field. The team responded to an overturned rail car tanker simulating leakage of hazardous material at AFD’s training center rubble pile.

On the anniversary of the 1964 “Good Friday” earthquake, the CST and AFD participated in Exercise Alaska Shield and Vigilant Guard-Alaska 2014. VG-AK14 is a regional, tactically focused exercise and will have multiple interagency field-training exercises that are focused on the response and recovery from a major earthquake and tsunami. VG-AK14 is an exercise conducted to ensure the state of Alaska and the nation are prepared and ready to respond to catastrophic events.

Options

  • Army
  • Marines
  • Navy
  • Air Force
  • Coast Guard
  • National Guard

HOLIDAY GREETINGS

SELECT A HOLIDAY:

VIDEO ON DEMAND

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Youtube
  • Flickr