Analyzing the Incident: Bill Hand

The Hazmat Legends Series presents more than 25 nationally recognized leading hazmat responders - with more than 900 years of combined boots on the ground experience. As influential instructors, widely read authors and hazmat responders, they have seen it all and now in this exciting and comprehensive series, they explain how and why hazmat teams do the things they do. These exciting programs cover it all - whether you have new recruits to train or want to provide a stimulating refresher for your team.

Whether you are trained to the operations, technician or command level, the first task of every first responder to a hazmat or WMD emergency is the same. It's size up - or what the NFPA standard on hazmat competencies calls Analyzing the Incident. A systematic risk-based response begins with an analysis of the problem - assessing the hazards, evaluating the potential consequences and then choosing the best response actions.

Capt. Bill Hand spent 31 years with the Houston Fire Department before joining the Harris County Hazardous Materials Response Team, where he responded to thousands of calls involving almost every type of container and chemical possible that could cause an incident. He is also a former WMD Specialist with Texas Task Force One US&R Team. Bill has been a Hazardous Materials trainer and lecturer nationwide since 1980. In this clip, Bill discusses the clues that responders can get from containers that hold the hazardous materials to help size up an incident.


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