Low Moor

Service held to commemorate 100th anniversary of munitions factory blast A memorial service has been held to mark the centenary of an explosion at a munitions factory in Bradford which claimed the lives of 40 people.   To read the entire article,  CLICK HERE .
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Plaque Rededicated

City honors memory of three killed in chemical plant explosion Southgate, MI, citizens rededicate plaque honoring three workers killed in chemical plant explosion 15 years ago.   To read the entire article,  CLICK HERE .
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Still no official explanation for 2015 power plant explosion One year later, there's still no word on the exact cause of the catastrophic explosion and fire at the Cabras 3 and 4 power plant.   To read entire article,  CLICK HERE .
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Jim Beam

New form of fire, inspired by bourbon, might help with oil spills A 2011 fire at a whiskey distillery may hold the answer to dealing with future oil spills.   To read the entire article,  CLICK HERE .
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Vigor Industrial

San Francisco Fire Department gets its first new fire boat in 60 years.   The San Francisco Fire Department recently took delivery on its first new fire boat in 60 years.   To read the entire article,  CLICK HERE .
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New York firefighters to employ drones at major fires Drones will soon be taking to the skies to help New York City firefighters battle major fires and emergencies. The New York Times reported Thursday the FDNY will deploy a drone to 2-alarm fires or greater in the next few weeks.   To read the entire article,  CLICK HERE .
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When Not to Pull the Trigger

Storage tank boilover in Nicaragua dies unchallenged Williams Fire & Hazard Control, a Tyco Fire Protection Products business, was ready, willing and able to extinguish the aftermath of a crude oil boilover in Nicaragua that left two 150-foot diameter storage tanks in flames. However, the decision by the local oil company was to let the remaining fire die a slow, natural death.   “The changing dynamics of the scenario kept taking the ball out of our hands,” said Chauncey Naylor, WF&HC director of emergency response and training. “You have a plan but then the situation changes dramatically. So you have to make a new plan.” For Naylor, the biggest triumph of the entire experience was predicting the boilover to within 40 minutes, giving authorities time to clear any personnel in harm’s way. “According to company representatives the crude oil tank boiled over four times in rapid succession, but none of the...
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Apex Blast

NC chemical explosion 10 years later: How it changed hazmat site regulations Ten years ago Wednesday (Oct. 5), an explosion and fire at a hazardous waste transfer facility in Apex forced more than 17,000 people from their homes. FEMA later said it was one of the largest evacuations in the history of the U.S.   To read the entire article,  CLICK HERE .   To read the IFW coverage of the original incident,  CLICK HERE .
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CSB releases final case study into 2013 explosion and fire at Williams Olefins in Geismar, LA The Chemical Safety Board has released its final report into the June 13, 2013, explosion and fire at the Williams Olefins Plant in Geismar, Louisiana, which killed two employees. The report concludes that process safety management program deficiencies at the Williams Geismar facility during the 12 years leading to the incident allowed a type of heat exchanger called a “reboiler” to be unprotected from overpressure, and ultimately rupture, causing the explosion. The Williams Geismar facility produces ethylene and propylene for the petrochemical industry and employs approximately 110 people. At the time of the incident, approximately 800 contractors worked at the plant on an expansion project aimed at increasing the production of ethylene. The incident occurred during non-routine operational activities that introduced heat to the reboiler, which was offline and isolated from its pressure relief device....
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CSB deploying to site of chemical release in Atchison, KS Washington, DC, October 24, 2016 – An investigative team from the U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) has deployed to the scene of a chemical release that led to a shelter-in-place order for thousands of residents and at least 85 members of the public seeking medical attention in Atchison, KS.   The release occurred near an onsite wastewater treatment plant owned and operated by a company that  produces distilled spirits and specialty wheat proteins and starches.  The CSB’s four person investigative team will be led by Supervisory Investigator Johnnie Banks. Chairperson Vanessa Allen Sutherland said, “This incident underscores the very serious consequences that can occur when a chemical release goes beyond a facility’s fence line and impacts nearby residents.”  The CSB is an independent federal agency charged with investigating industrial chemical accidents. The agency’s board members are appointed by the president and...
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Corrective Action

PHMSA issues final orders with $732,100 in civil penalties to ONEOK The U.S. Department of Transportation's (DOT) Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) today issued three Final Orders with required corrective actions and civil penalties totaling $732,100 to ONEOK NGL Pipeline, L.P., ONEOK NGL Pipeline, L.L.C., and ONEOK Underground Storage Company, L.L.C. (collectively, ONEOK). The final orders are the result of an investigation into a fire that occurred at a ONEOK facility in Bushton, KS that found 15 violations of the pipeline safety regulations in 49 C.F.R. Part 195. ONEOK operates 11,500 miles of pipeline transporting hazardous liquids in Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and several other states.  
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Eaton Corporation

Volunteer fire brigade at Nebraska manufacturing plant has been at the ready since 1969 KEARNEY, Neb. — When fire breaks out in the forge shop of Kearney’s Eaton Corp. manufacturing plant, its fire brigade is quick to respond.   To read the entire article,  CLICK HERE .
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West Fargo

Monsanto, Cargill donate grain bin rescue equipment to North Dakota fire department Cargill and Monsanto, teamed up to donate about $8,300 in agriculture rescue equipment to the West Fargo, ND, Fire Department.   To read the entire article,  CLICK HERE .
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South Dakota

OSHA cites ethanol refinery for a May 2016 fire that killed a pipefitter Federal investigators found multiple safety violations at a South Dakota ethanol refinery expansion project after a 38-year-old pipefitter suffered fatal burn injuries when ethanol spilled from a process pipe he was working on and was ignited by flames from nearby welding operations. On Nov. 1, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued five serious safety violations to the worker's employer Bilfinger-Westcon, the project's construction contractor. Inspectors determined the contractor allowed welding work to occur without verifying that the area was free of flammable liquids. OSHA cited the refinery operator and owner, Sioux River Ethanol LLC which operates as Poet Biorefining-Hudson, for three serious violations of OSHA's process safety management standards including failing to ensure the process pipe being removed did not contain ethanol. "This death was needless and preventable if critical safety standards...
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Energy Center

Connecticut firefighters train at new power plant As construction continues on the 785-megawatt CPV Towantic Energy Center in Oxford, CT, the town’s firefighters recently had a training execise at the site.   To read the entire article,  CLICK HERE .  
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Fire crew training exercise includes rescuing six people missing at a UK plant Crews attended GlaxoSmithKline's biopharmaceutical plant in Ulverston, UK, as part of an exercise in which numerous people were trapped inside the building and needed rescuing.   To read the entire article,  CLICK HERE .
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Company achieves ULC Category 3 product certification on foam concentrates Green Bay, Wisconsin - The Solberg Company a leading innovator in firefighting foam concentrates and systems hardware, announced in November the company has achieved CAN/ULC S560; Standard for Category 3 Foam Liquid Concentrates Certification on the company’s ARCTIC™ 3% and ARCTIC 6% MIL-SPEC AFFF foam concentrates. ARCTIC™ foam concentrates from SOLBERG are PFOS-free synthetic firefighting foam concentrates used to effectively extinguish Class B fuel fires.  ARCTIC foam concentrates provide rapid extinguishment and excellent burn back resistance and can be used in fresh, salt or brackish water. In May 2012, ARCTIC AFFF and ATC™ foam product lines became C6 fluorochemical based, making Solberg the first foam manufacturer in the Americas to offer commercially available foam concentrates that were compliant to the 2010/2015 U.S. EPA PFOA Product Stewardship Program.  In addition to ULC Category 3 Certification, ARCTIC 3% and 6% MIL-SPEC AFFF concentrates...
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Training Day

Hazard identification and risk assessment   In order to establish a successful training program to respond to major incidents you must first identify the potential hazards that could face your facility. The process of identifying potential major incidents can be challenging as opposed to smaller incidents.  Many of the smaller incidents, such as minor hazardous materials spills or injuries, are responded to on a relatively regular basis by that particular facility or by industry as a whole. In the case of major incidents, be aware of the potential for a particular hazard due to the scarcity of incidents that are considered high-impact, low-probability (HILP) events.   Since this was written during the week preceding and completed on the eve of the 15th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, I will offer as background, policies that were put in place “to strengthen the preparedness of  the  United  States  to  prevent  and  respond  to ...
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Risk Assessment

Pre-plan for your extinguishing system The third quarter 2016 issue of Fire Protection Engineering magazine discusses several fire protection systems that firefighters will more commonly encounter. This article, discusses some of the basics and what to expect when responding to buildings or equipment protected by these systems.  Water Mist/Hybrid Water mist systems are nothing new. It is a well-established fact that water mist absorbs heat better than other forms of water application. However, the mist must get into the fire or throughout the entire volume of the protected space. In large spaces, like large aircraft hangars, that has been problematic. New designs intended to get the mist into the fire are always being investigated. A recent example is using pop-up nozzles in hangars to get the mist to the floor, where the fuel fire exists. This will not be the same as the current U.S. Navy design which applies AFFF through...
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Focus on Hazmat

Innovation: Necessity, ingenuity and invention From the time of the first European incursion into the New World, Americans have been an inventive and innovative people. That this should be the case is due in large part to the accident of geography. North America was (and is) a long way from Europe and travel was extremely slow in those early days. Thus the first colonists often felt, and in fact were, very isolated and thus, for the most part, dependent on their own talents and resources to meet their needs. Consequently the underlying philosophy of the settlers was “if it is to be, it is up to me.” This applied to fire protection just like everything else. The man who established the first formally organized volunteer fire department in 1736 also invented bifocals, wrote and printed Poor Richard’s “Almanack,” studied electricity and helped draft the Declaration of Independence. His name was Benjamin...
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