Threat Response Conference Call

Threat Response Conference Call

In light of recent terror attacks in our country, a conference call was held April 17 with the FBI, SLED, SC HAZMAT Working Group, EMD, and leaders of  first responder agencies throughout the state concerning the suspicious package and powder calls that have been occurring recently. The past has shown the importance of an integrated response of local and state responders to ensure the  safety of our citizens and successful criminal prosecution.

We would like to pass on some reminders:

  • Science drives the response.  Follow the principles of a risk-based response. Remember that all on-scene testing for biological threats is presumptive only – lab results are the only definite.
  • Protecting yourself and the public is paramount.
  • Remember the order for eliminating threats is: explosives (oxidizer) -radiation (rad) -corrosives (ph) -flammability (LEL) and general toxicity (VOC). These must be completed and documented prior to sending the sample to the lab.

Threat assessment is vital and has to be performed starting from the dispatch. Use the SC Threat assessment document attached. Once the threat is determined credible, the package should undergo a joint evaluation by HazMat and EOD personnel.

Please review and follow the FBI/DHS suspicious package document. It provides direct guidance for handling packages with and without a release.

Be familiar with your local level of HazMat response. Where is the next level of response? As a fire officer, we need to understand the capabilities and limitations of our teams.  We have seven regional HazMat/WMD Teams throughout the state that are available by contacting SLED through your local law enforcement agency. We are also very fortunate to have the 43rd CST available through SLED. Remember to utilize unified command, county warning points and also notify DHEC if you have one of these calls.

Thanks to all who participated in the conference call today and a special thank you to the FBI, SLED and Chief King. The next Working Group meeting will be May 16 at 9:30am in the SC Fire Academy US&R building.

Thank you,

Chief Randy Carter, Chairman-SC HAZMAT Working Group

Chief Charlie King, SCSFA Hazardous Materials Response Committee

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