Nearly 160 emergency personnel, first responders, hazmat teams, safety managers, and local emergency planning committee members attended an ethanol safety seminar in Forsyth, Georgia this week.
The free seminar was co-hosted by the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), Norfolk Southern Corp., and Motiva Enterprises to provide in-depth information on proper training techniques for responding to ethanol-related emergencies. Several more are planned in various locations during 2012.
The goal of these safety seminars is to provide full ethanol emergency response training experience that can be put to use immediately in the field as well as passed along to other first response teams. A majority of this training is based on the Complete Training Guide to Ethanol Emergency Response, a training package created by the Ethanol Emergency Response Coalition (EERC) that has been distributed throughout the United States and to several countries worldwide. The seminars include an introduction to ethanol and ethanol blended fuels, chemical and physical characteristics of ethanol and hydrocarbon fuels, transportation of ethanol blended fuels, storage and dispensing locations, firefighting foam principles and ethanol, ethanol blended fuel emergencies, and incidents at tank farm and bulk storage locations.
“Almost 14 billion gallons of ethanol are produced at 209 biofineries spread across 29 states,” said Kristy Moore, RFA VP of Technical Services. “As the product is increasing in use and transportation throughout the states, first responders need to be familiar with the fuel and how to effectively respond to an ethanol related incident. This program details the response information that is essential to these emergency situations.”
The RFA and Norfolk Southern Corp. will be hosting Ethanol Safety Seminars throughout 2012 in the following locations: Chattanooga, TN on April 18th, also co-sponsored with Tate & Lyle; Spartanburg, SC on May 7th; Raleigh, NC on July 11th; Decatur, IL on August 22nd, also co-sponsored with CN Railway and Archer Daniels Midland (ADM); and Pittsburgh, PA in late summer. RFA has additionally partnered with Canadian National (CN) Railway for several Ethanol Safety seminars in 2012.