Volunteer firefighters prepare for large plant fires in Mississippi

LOWNDES COUNTY, MS. – In many rural counties of Mississippi sits factories, plants, and warehouses that may have been built many years ago.   With the real possibility of a fire, volunteer fire fighters must be prepared for anything.   To read the entire article, CLICK HERE.   .
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Johnson Controls makes the future of fire and life safety smarter and faster

  The latest versions of NFPA 72 and the International Building Code (IBC) spell out new requirements for the creation of areas of refuge within buildings that meet specific size or height parameters. An area of refuge is an interior location specially designed to keep occupants safe during a fire or other emergency. They are meant to provide safe places to shelter when immediate evacuation may not be physically possible or, as with the control room of a massive plant or refinery, operationally advisable.   In addition to fire rated construction and a steady supply of fresh air, an area of refuge is also required to have a means of two-way communications that allows occupants to speak with first responders, inform them of their status and keep informed of rescue efforts.    A NEW WAY TO COMMUNICATE To meet these new requirements, Johnson Controls developed a digital, emergency two-way communications system...
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Phillips 66 tracks firefighters' cardiac health

    Medical surveillance is the analysis of health information to uncover problems in the workplace. For Timothy Raycob, director of compliance for medical surveillance at Phillips 66, much of the job means closely monitoring personnel for exposure to hazardous materials.   “We have more than 9,000 people in Phillips 66 who are enrolled in various regulatory programs,” Raycob said. “With specific hazards, they have to get exams at specific frequencies. I’m responsible for tracking compliance.”   Carcinogens such as benzene and organic lead rank highest on Raycob’s watch list. But in 2012, Stephen Pepper, Phillips 66 director of crisis management HSE compliance and services, asked him to extend monitoring to include hazards common to industrial firefighting – heat and stress.     “He asked us to develop a medical rehab and monitoring program for his crisis management schools, which include the corporate fire and rescue school,” Raycob said.   Trained...
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Dwight Williams inducted into National Fire Heritage Center's Hall of Legends

Dwight Williams, founder of Williams Fire & Hazard Control, was among 13 new inductees into the National Fire Heritage Center's Hall of Legends, Legacies and Leaders during ceremonies Monday in Emmitsburg, MD.   The Hall of Legends, established by the Heritage Center's board of directors, provides individual recognition of significant contributions and distinguished service to the fire and emergency services mission.   Williams became a legendary leader in industrial fire protection and built a family business using innovative efforts to make industrial fire protection safer and more effective. He successfully extinguished or controlled over 100 major industrial fires. He contributed significantly to identifying new tools and practices, owning 59 firefighting equipment patents, and is recognized around the world as the leader in the field of flammable liquid firefighting.   Other fire service leaders named to the Hall of Legends include:   Ronny J. Coleman Retired Fire Chief, California State Fire Marshal, and founding...
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Hundreds of emergency crews to test Sequoyah nuclear plant readiness Wednesday

Soddy-Daisy, TN - Hundreds of emergency responders from federal, state and local agencies will be running evacuation routes, setting up radiation detection equipment and participating in alert and relocation activities around the Sequoyah Nuclear Power Plant Wednesday.   To read the entire article,   .
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Longview rescue team recognized for professionalism during Lone Star plant explosion

Longview, TX - An East Texas emergency response team with specialized training is being recognized for their professionalism during a horrible industrial accident that claimed one life.   To read the entire article, CLICK HERE .
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Maersk: New Cargo Guidelines After Containership Fire

  Maersk has implemented new guidelines on dangerous goods stowage that aim to improve safety practices across its fleet in the wake of the fire aboard container ship Maersk Honam that killed five crew members earlier this year.   To read the entire article, CLICK HERE .
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National Fire Heritage Center Hall of Legends, Legacies and Leaders induction ceremony set for Oct. 8th

  Emmitsburg, MD - On Monday, Oct. 8, 2018, the National Fire Heritage Center (NFHC) in Emmitsburg, Maryland, will conduct a formal ceremony for this year’s inductees into the Hall of Legends, Legacies and Leaders Class of 2018 during the NFHC’s Annual Board of Directors Meeting.    All interested are welcome to attend the event which will also include lunch.  RSVP’s are requested to allow for food and beverage service.   The Hall of Legends, Legacies and Leaders provides individuals recognition of significant contributions and distinguished service to the fire and emergency services mission. It is one of the most important initiatives undertaken each year by the National Fire Heritage Center.   The Induction Ceremony at 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time will be held in the second floor meeting room of the Vigilant Hose Company Activities Building (formerly Emmitsburg Volunteer Ambulance Company facility) at 17701 Creamery Road, Emmitsburg, Maryland 21727.  Those arriving early...
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El Segundo Chevron ERT captain Robert Taylor dies from pancreatic cancer

  Robert Taylor, captain with the Chevron El Segundo (CA) ERT, died Sept. 1 after a lengthy battle with pancreatic cancer. Services are scheduled for 11 a.m. Sept. 29 at American Martyrs Catholic Church, 624 15th Street, Manhattan Beach, CA. Taylor's wife, Jill Brunkhardt-Taylor, posted the following on the internet. "It is with a heavy heart that I have to announce the passing of the love of my life Robert William Taylor Sr. He passed away peacefully with me holding his hand and my other hand on his heart, and his beautiful daughter Alex also by his side. We are devastated and heartbroken, but know that he is at peace, no longer in pain and surrounded by conditional love." In 2010, Robert was diagnosed with colon cancer. After a year-long battle for his life, Robert remained in remission for five years and was declared officially cancer free in 2015. But in...
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W.Va. officials present final report on IEI fire

Parkersburg, WV - State officials offered a “final” report on last year’s fire at the Intercontinental Export-Import Plastics warehouse on Camden Avenue Thursday, but a big question remains unanswered after 10 months.     To read the entire article, CLICK HERE .
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Refinery explosion roils regional asphalt supply

  Dave Clement used to expect a daily delivery of two truckloads of asphalt binder from Superior's Husky Energy refinery to his worksite's mobile asphalt plants, where it would be mixed with gravel and placed on the road.   To read entire article, CLICK HERE.
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U.S. Chemical Safety Board teetering on brink of elimination

  On a warm morning in April, workers at a Wisconsin oil refinery were conducting a routine shutdown for maintenance. Suddenly, a gasoline cracking unit exploded, and the workers watched in horror as a huge fireball ripped through the plant. They ran for their lives, barely escaping the blast.   To read the entire article, CLICK HERE .  
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CSB releases update on probe into blowout and fire at Pryor Trust gas well in Pittsburg County, OK

    Oklahoma City, OK, August 16, 2018 - Today the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) released a factual update into its ongoing investigation of the January 22, 2018, blowout and fire at the Pryor Trust Gas Well located in Pittsburg County, Oklahoma, that killed five workers.     The CSB has determined the incident occurred shortly after drilling crew members removed the drill pipe from the well in a process known as “tripping.” To date, the CSB’s investigation has determined the following timeline related to the blowout and fire:   •    January 21, 2018: Crew members from the Patterson-UTI Drilling Company had been drilling a gas well for over a week. Activities were being overseen by the operator of the well, Red Mountain Operating, LLC (or RMO) in Pittsburg County, Oklahoma. •    At 3:36 pm, the Patterson crew stopped drilling to remove the drill pipe from the well and change...
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German responder celebrates 26 years on Merck fire brigade in Darmstadt

  Bianca Just, 42, never knows what to expect on a working day, yet she is always ready to tackle the job. Her 24-hour on-call shift at the Merck plant fire brigade in Darmstadt usually starts at 7 o'clock in the morning. Light brown hair and an infectious laugh conceals her true age. "The shift work keeps you young," she jokes.   To read the entire article, CLICK HERE .
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Self-contained fixed foam system smothers tank fires with precision

  Any diagram of the typical fixed fire protection system soon turns elaborate with pumps, proportioners and valves. By comparison, the Swiss Fire Protection Research & Development AG (SFPRD) Pi Foam Firefighting System for large volume flammable liquid storage tanks thrives on simplicity. The system is basic and effective, said Andras Peller, SFPRD’s director. He compared it to popping the top on an extremely agitated can of carbonated beverage. “Despite being less expensive than most traditional systems, Pi Foam offers a quality of performance that can exceed any standard,” he said. Essentially, the Pi (Pressurized Instant) Foam system consists of a single moving part – a remote controlled valve that caps a high pressure vessel. If the sensors on the tank detect flames, the valve pops open and ready-to-use foam is pushed through a pipe network traveling up the tank and around the rim. Within moments, a symmetrical coat of foam...
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Superior, WI fire chief presented Red Adair Award for April 2018 refinery fire response

    Industrial Fire World magazine honored Superior, WI Fire Chief Steve Panger with its 2018 Red Adair Award Friday (Aug. 10) in recognition of his department’s response to the April 26 fire and explosion that rocked the Husky Energy refinery in Superior.   For YouTube footage of the presentation, CLICK HERE or see below.     "Thank you to Industrial Fire World magazine for keeping the legacy of Red Adair alive," Panger said. "It's people like Red who have made advancements in the world of industrial fire fighting that definitely make our job safer today."   A preliminary report by the U.S. Chemical Safety Board states that an initial explosion in a catalytic cracking unit at Husky Energy triggered a 15,000 barrel spill of hot asphalt that spread nearly two hours before ignition.   The award, presented during the International Association of Fire Chiefs Fire-Rescue International Conference and Expo in Dallas, TX,...
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Buenos Aires refinery responders battle training fires in Texas

  Argentine emergency responders training in the United States expect to encounter language problems. What surprises Pablo Martin Fritz Oliver, fire chief at Shell’s 8,000-barrels-a-day refinery in Buenos Aires, is how easily firefighters overcome those stumbling blocks. “It’s not really anything debilitating,” the bilingual Oliver said. ”Firefighters all speak the same language, really. The objectives are the same, no matter what language you’re speaking.” Oliver and two other responders from the Buenos Aires ERT attended the Shell corporate fire school at Brayton Fire Training Field in April. The school is held three times a year in Texas to accommodate Shell emergency responders worldwide. Oliver’s ERT is essentially a volunteer organization supplemented by five fulltime professional firefighters, including himself. Per shift, the ERT typically has about 25 volunteer responders on site to draw from in an emergency. Parked at the refinery’s single fire station is an inventory of rolling stock that includes...
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Texas chemical plant, CEO indicted for 'reckless' release during Hurricane Harvey

  The North American subsidiary of a French chemical manufacturer and two senior staff members were indicted Friday (Aug. 3) in connection with last year's explosion at the Crosby, Texas, plant in the wake of Hurricane Harvey.   To read the entire article, CLICK HERE .
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Fire at Coca-Cola factory hits UK supply of popular drink Rose's Lime Cordial

Lime lovers around the UK have been left scouring supermarket shelves for their favorite cordial after the country's current supply sold out.   To read the entire article, CLICK HERE .
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CSB releases factual update on April explosion and fire at Wisconsin refinery

  Superior, Wisconsin, August 2, 2018: Today the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) released a factual update into its ongoing investigation of the April 26, 2018, explosion and subsequent fires at the Husky Superior Refinery in Superior, Wisconsin. The initial explosion occurred in the refinery’s Fluid Catalytic Cracking Unit (FCCU) at approximately 10:00 am while the refinery was shutting down the FCCU for periodic maintenance and inspection. To date the CSB has determined the following: The explosion took place during a planned maintenance shutdown of the refinery FCCU. The incident occurred during a scheduled break time and many workers previously in the unit before the explosion had moved either into blast resistant buildings or away from the process unit. One piece of debris from the explosion flew about 200 feet, and struck a large, nearby, aboveground storage tank containing about 50,000 barrels of asphalt. The side of the tank was punctured,...
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