Inside Track


Twin Cities First Responders Study Hazmat Safety

Posted June 19, 2014 08:26 AM CDT

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Matt Thompson, Union Pacific regional manager-Hazardous Materials, (center), conducts training for Twin cities-area emergency first responders.

Minutes count in emergency situations, and how to respond effectively and safely in the unlikely event of a chemical incident was the focus of a recent TRANSCAER (Transportation Community Awareness and Emergency Response) Program for Twin Cities-area first responders.

More than 90 emergency personnel attended hands-on and classroom sessions that covered best practices in safety, security and emergency response for chlorine. The training took place at the BNSF Northtown Yard in Minneapolis, June 11-12.

"This training lets first responders know they are not alone in a chlorine emergency," said Henry Ward of The Chlorine Institute. "One of the very important things first responders and hazmat specialists learn at this training is how to manage the early minutes of an incident until we can get additional support to them."

Matt Thompson, Union Pacific regional manager-Hazardous Materials, said the training was a great opportunity for local first responders, but also served as outreach to contractors who might be called into service during an incident.

The training was sponsored by TRANSCAER, Union Pacific, BNSF Railway and Canadian Pacific Railway.