Analyzing the Incident: Robert Ingram

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.

Robert Ingram has spent almost four decades in the Fire Service, with over 30 of those years working for the New York City Fire Department. He was the Chief in Charge of HazMat Operations from September 11th, 2001 until August of 2007 and currently is assigned to the FDNY Center for Terrorism and Disaster Preparedness as the WMD Branch Chief. He is also a member of the NFPA 472 Committee, IAFC HazMat Committee, and an IAFF Master instructor. Chief Ingram discusses the difficulties of identifying chemicals in small containers and the impact exposures of these chemicals may have on the health of first responders.

And now for a limited time, the Hazmat Legends Series, along with four resource CD-ROMs with PowerPoint presentations, testing materials, risk management case studies, and additional resources to help instructors with seminar presentations, can be yours for FREE when you purchase the Hazardous Materials: Managing the Incident Series. Check here for more details . . .

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560 Tons of Radioactive Water Dumped into Pacific, More to Come

The Tokyo Electric Power Co. (Tepco) has released contaminated groundwater from the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant into the Pacific Ocean in an attempt to manage the huge amounts of radioactive water that have built up at the complex. The nuclear plant has been crippled since being hit by an 11-meter tsunami and a 9.0 scale earthquake in March 2011.

There have been massive amounts of radioactive water accumulating at the site since the disasters struck. Groundwater continues to flow down from nearby hills, with an estimated 400 tons entering the basements of the reactor building each day. The water is pumped out and stored in over 1,000 temporary tanks, but those tanks have just about hit capacity.

Tepco dumped 560 tons of radioactive water into the ocean. The company is also planning on dumping another 790 tons of contaminated water in the Pacific, but will not confirm when that will be taking place.

Tepco worker prepares to release radioactive water into Pacific Ocean. Tepco worker prepares to release radioactive water into Pacific Ocean.

Tepco claims the safety limits for the water are tighter than the recommendation of the World Health Organization guidelines for drinking water. However, the facility being used to remove the most dangerous nuclides from the water continues to have problems and has been shut down. According to reports, the system, which was installed two years ago, has yet to be completely functional, suffering from equipment leaks and repeated leaks.

Emergency Film Group’s Radiation Monitoring DVD training video teaches emergency personnel in mission specific Operations Level competencies regarding monitoring for radiation at WMD events as well as natural disasters and industrial accidents.


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Children Terrorized by Gunman in School "Exercise"

Imagine the terror your child would fear if suddenly a masked man brandishing a handgun showed up in
their classroom.

Now imagine your outrage as a parent to find out that this was actually an “enrichment exercise” by the
school – and they failed to notify parents ahead of time of this exercise.

This is exactly what occurred at the Eastern Wayne Middle School in Goldsboro, NC. Students sitting in
sixth grade classrooms were told there was an armed robber in their school. The man was actually a
school employee wearing a ski-mask and holding a toy handgun.

The ‘robber’ entered each of the sixth grade classrooms, waving his handgun, pretending he was going
to rob the children. Although the person was only ‘play-acting’, many of the children thought the
situation was real and become upset, some even crying. Parents didn’t find out about the exercise until
after the fact and many were upset.

The school sent out a letter to parents, apologizing for the event. Part of the letter reads:

“As part of an enrichment lesson on exhibiting good citizenship and observing your surroundings,
another staff member entered the sixth grade classrooms and pretended to steal an item while dressed
in a ski-mask and holding a toy pistol. Even though the play-acting caused some initial concerns, once
the skit was completed, the teachers quickly explained who the person was and that the 'theft' was not

Portion of the letter parents received after incident. Portion of the letter parents received after incident.

Many parents question the school’s judgment in exposing the children to such an experience, especially
in light of all the recent school shootings that have taken place.

The school district’s public information officer Ken Derksen released this statement:

“It obviously did lack that sensitivity that was needed...all of our schools work very hard to promote a
safe learning this situation, the exercise in its original intent was appropriate, but in
how it was executed it obviously lacked judgment.”

According to Derksen, someone was supposed to walk into six classrooms, grab something off a desk in
each and leave. The students would then discuss how to respond.

Emergency Film Group’s Active Shooter: Rapid Response covers the key topics in preparing for and
responding to a mass shooting. The film also offers guidance for school officials and emergency
operation centers. Organizations of all kinds, in 39 states and abroad, are using the film to prepare –
often showing the film to start an exercise involving schools and the emergency response community.
To learn more, read here. . .

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Oregon Man Charged with Murder and Arson

A 65 year old Oregon man has been arrested and charged with six counts of aggravated murder and three counts of first-degree arson in connection with the slayings of three people. Edward Lawrence Nelson, of Coos County, is accused of killing his wife and a married couple who lived next door, and setting both houses on fire to cover the murders.

Police responded to a call from someone who reported they saw both homes on fire and the suspect driving away from the scene. When emergency responders arrived at Nelson’s house, they found Kathleen Nelson dead. The preliminary investigation indicates homicidal violence as the cause of death.

The home next door was also on fire, and the bodies of retired teacher Renae Cottam and his wife, Lola, both 73, were also found. The couple was both killed before the fire started. Investigators have also said that both fires were intentionally started.

Nelson was arrested shortly after by Oregon State Police. His bail has been set at $6 million. Autopsies are pending on all three victims. The investigation is ongoing.

Emergency Film Group’s Fire Investigation Package is a two-part series of training videos which covers investigating fires. Part One covers interviewing, examining the scene, writing reports and follow-up activities. Part Two studies how fires typically begin, fire behavior, how firefighting tactics may affect the fire and destroy evidence, methods for determining the point of origin and cause of the fire, identifying accidental fire vs. arson, gathering evidence. To learn more, read here. . .

Edward Lawrence Nelson faces multiple charges, including murder and arson, in the deaths of three people. Edward Lawrence Nelson faces multiple charges, including murder and arson, in the deaths of three people.

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Radiation Monitoring

Using radiation monitoring equipment In a scene from 'Radiation Monitoring' emergency personnel sample for radiation.

Radiation Monitoring is a DVD-based training package recently produced by Emergency Film Group. This film with accompanying Instructor CD-Rom prepares emergency personnel to protect themselves and their communities during incidents in which radiation may be present. It follows the guidelines of ASTM-2601, Standard Practice for Radiological Emergency Response, and was reviewed by a technical committee of experts in monitoring and response.

This package would be an ideal outreach to communities in which nuclear energy plants are located. Nuclear personnel with the responsibility of working with local emergency management agencies could use this as a resource for training emergency responders  who would be responsible for operating radiation equipment in the event of an incident.

Scenarios covered by the film include terrorism, industrial accidents, natural disasters, and transportation mishaps. It examines dosimeters, radiation pagers and radiation detectors and shows how to interpret results. Also covered:  health effects of chronic and acute exposure to radiation, understanding exposure measurements and limits, protective clothing & equipment, incident size-up and decontamination.

The Instructor’s CD-Rom has a Powerpoint presentation that closely follows the film, a second Powerpoint presentation devoted to the Inverse Square Law, a number of documents that relate to the topic that can be downloaded and printed as handouts, and a post-seminar quiz.

This package can be ordered at

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