Monday, October 18, 2010

October 18, 2010 -- San Jose Calls for Two Hazmat Responses

1st Call -
Overturned Tanker Truck

At 4:30 P.M. on Monday, October 18, Fire Associates received a special request from the San Jose Fire Department. They were on the scene of an overturned tanker truck on Highway 101 near Morgan Hill. Assistance from FASCV was requested as they were anticipating an extended operation. Bruce Dembecki responded from Station 6 in Fire Support Unit 2 with FASCV member John Whiteside. Bruce and John were met on scene by FASCV members Mike Chappell and George Hoyt.

FSU-2 arrived just as the CHP had arranged for the heavy duty tow trucks to shove the overturned tanker onto the side of the road, opening up more lanes of traffic for the afternoon commute. From there, the plan was to wait for the environmental clean up company to arrive and supervise the transfer of the 160-degree molten wax inside the tanker to an empty tanker waiting nearby.

George made a Subway sandwich run and we organized 30 meals on scene for the fire crews. Both hot and cold drinks were popular as the sun set and the night air showed signs of a Fall cool down.

Several hours later, clean up crews arrived on scene and worked with the Fire Department to setup a transfer between the overturned tanker and the standby tanker. With everyone fed and watered, we were packing up and wax was flowing between the tankers when at 22:40 "101 IC" (Battalion 29) released HIT 29, Truck 29 and Fire Support Unit 2 to respond to another Hazmat incident on the other side of San Jose with the Santa Clara County Fire Hazmat crew already on scene.
-- Photo and report submitted by Bruce Dembecki

2nd Response -
Alviso Hotel Incident

While dealing with an overturned Tanker near Morgan Hill, the San Jose Fire Dept. was juggling another Hazmat incident in the Alvisio neighborhood, north of the City. As the incident began, Fire Support Unit 2 was with San Jose's HIT units in South San Jose. However, help was requested by Santa Clara County Fire's Hazmat group to deal with the incident. Once County Fire arrived on scene, it was decided they would make a Hazmat entry into the facility (Extended Stay America Hotel) to investigate the situation.

So, as the Tanker incident was wrapping up, Battalion 29 released the HIT team along with Truck 29 and Fire Support Unit 2 and asked all three units to respond to the incident in Alvisio.  B29 promised to let us know when she arrived if we were not needed, and FASCV members Bruce Dembecki and John Whiteside headed north.

While Fire Support 2 was en-route, the County team entered the hotel and conducted their initial investigation. As FSU2 arrived on scene, the County team was exiting the facility and reporting that there was an all clear in the facility and the incident was over. Bruce and John headed back to Station 6 and were back in quarters before midnight.

-- Photo and report submitted by Bruce Dembecki