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Essay Paper on HazMat Spill

by David Connor

Accidents involving large amounts of chemicals in ship containers, trains and storage tanks at large fixed facilities have required professionals to design and implement several scientific tools that can help responders and planners to solve a chemical spill problem. (National Atmospheric and Atmospheric Administration, 2002) It is the duty of the officer in charge of the spill to plan the necessary actions to prevent more spills and decontaminate the area affected. There is a need to clean up the decontaminated area because hazardous materials can pose threat to the health of individuals who are near or in the area. Aside from the health risks, the area contaminated will not be used for productive purposes if not decontaminated. For cleaning up of hazardous materials spill, the personnel should have the proper protection equipment. The purpose of decontamination is the prevention of further spill of the contaminants beyond the already contaminated area. In setting up the site for hazardous materials spill site, factors such as the amount and rate of spill and the weather conditions on the area should be considered. (Phoenix Regional Standard Operating Procedures, 1998) If the hazardous materials are sensitive to temperature changes, the temperature of the site for decontamination should be regulated to prevent further dangerous effects. Specific measures need to be followed to successfully do the steps of decontamination. (Phoenix Regional Standard Operating Procedures, 1998) The three courses of action are the confirmation of the level of contamination; decontamination; and, packaging of items and removal from the site. It is the duty of the officer in charge of decontamination to zone the area. The Decontamination Area should be established within the hot zone perimeter to be determined by the officer in charge. Personnel and other equipments should not be permitted to leave the hot zone without the approval of the officer in charge. (Phoenix Regional Standard Operating Procedures, 1998) Decontamination procedures include the decontamination of both the human and non-human elements of the hazardous materials zone.

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Phoenix Regional Standard Operating Procedures. (1998). Hazardous Materials Decontamination. Accessed on December 28, 2011 from
National Atmospheric and Atmospheric Administration. (2002). Hazmat Modeling Products for Spill Response and Planning. Accessed on December 28, 2011 from

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