Plugging the dike: Dutch port chief visits US fire symposium

Waal_20190208-213244_1 Jan Waals, Port of Rotterdam fire brigade.
    By ANTON RIECHER/IFW Editor In North America, the containment surrounding a flammable liquid storage tank is known as a dike. However, Jan Waals, in charge of emergency response for Europe’s largest port, is more likely to think of a dike as a wall built to keep the Atlantic Ocean from flooding his native country, not crude oil. “The Netherlands is a very small country with a lot of inhabitants,” he said. “Every square meter must be used to its maximum. All the installations in the port, the industrial plants, operate so close together.” Waals is director of the 315-member Joint Fire Brigade, an organization that provides firefighting and other assistance in or near the Port of Rotterdam. The brigade is a joint venture of the city of Rotterdam and nearly 60 companies operating in or near the massive port. The director was among the fire protection experts on hand...
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