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Meridian Fire Department receives hazardous material training

Published: Sep. 9, 2021 at 3:46 PM CDT
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MERIDIAN, Miss. (WTOK) - The Meridian Fire Department trained today in how to handle train derailments that involve hazardous materials like crude oil and other flammable liquids.

In a city like Meridian that is built on the railroads, this type of training is pivotal.

Training instructor Rick Hoffman said, “Well think about this, how many times a day has a train come through? And think of all the chemicals and even the transport for people like Amtrak comes through. So the first responders have to be capable, that if something goes wrong, how to keep the derail up, keep it going because there is millions of dollars at stake whenever the rail shuts down. And of course, we have public safety to take care of.”

Hoffman stressed how important it is for the public to heed the warning of the Fire Department, “I do want you guys to know that whenever the fire department gives you orders like how to shelter in place or how to evacuate that you know what to do. You guys live in the Southern United States, it’s super hot, and on days like this, the sun causes a lot of issues with chemicals and makes them hotter and high pressure.”

The Meridian Fire Department receives hazardous material training every three to four years.

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