Major Incident Planning and Support (MIP+S) Level 3

100 videos, 6 hours and 37 minutes

Course Content

When the alarm sounds

Video 96 of 100
5 min 32 sec
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So when the alarm sounds, what is going to happen is the first thing that we are going to do is we are going to look for people and we are going to make sure we evacuate everybody if we possibly can. So all those non-operational people will start heading towards the muster point. One of those people will be the shift chemist and he has a particular role to play in an emergency situation, so his role is to go down to the far end of the entrance road and greet the emergency services. He will wait for those emergency services to turn up because clearly when the alarm goes off, there may not be emergency services on the way because we have to dial 999 and alert the fire brigade, the police, the ambulance service that they need to come to the site, so typically that would take 10 or 15 minutes to get the first responders here. So the shift chemist will be at the end of the road. He liaises with the first responder when they arrive and he directs them on to the site and their key role initially is gathering information.

So say it is the fire brigade, they may well consider setting up a first command point here. We would expect at least one of the fire team to go into our main emergency room, which is in the operational area, that is where both our duty manager and our incident controller will be. They will have already put in place things like searching for any people who might be missing, finding those people, making sure we have got a muster roll started or if not started, almost completed by this stage, thinking about, where is the incident? What sort of key information are the emergency services going to want? So this is stuff like wind direction, where are your water tanks? Where is the incident? What is actually happening? What is the surrounding information that they need to worry about? Is there any danger of any material getting into the sewage system and therefore out into the river? All of those things are part of what will be that first liaison when the emergency services get to our control room.

The alarm is left going until such time as we have either accounted for everybody or the situation has been controlled. So whilst the alarm is going, the people are at the muster point. They are checked that they are at the muster point, they are checked in the sense that we want to know where everybody is. Their next question mark is, what are we going to do with them? Because the emergency services arrive, we cannot leave everybody standing up there indefinitely, so we have got to make a decision either for people to get their cars and to leave the site or to maybe move further down the road, away from the immediate vicinity because the likelihood is that within a very short time of the emergency services arriving, most of the nonessential people will have to be evacuated from the site to prevent any sort of serious incident.

It is an audio alarm, but we also carry radios, there will be a duty manager who will be at the muster point and our communications team will also liaise with the security team at the muster point and the shift chemist will have a radio. There is two radios in the security hut, one for us to listen in to what is going on and to report into the control room and we can also use a telephone but the alarm is just an audio alarm. So when the alarm goes off, our role really is to contain the incident as much as possible, so we are thinking about really three things, its people, its environment, and its equipment. So in terms of the people, we have our process to go through to make sure we find everybody, and that is, operationally we need to find everybody, but as you can appreciate on a site such as this, we also have a number of frequent contractors, we have hauliers and we have third parties attending site, so we need to find everybody. That is the first job.

The second job is that we need to make sure the environment is protected and we know what we are handling, so here we are looking at wind direction, making sure that the interceptors are shut off so material cannot get to the river and we are looking to determine the size and scale of the incident. So how big is it? What can we do to support the emergency services? What information are the emergency services going to need? Then we look to maybe getting our own equipment together, so starting fire pumps. If we need foam, we have got foam stocks on site, we have got 15,000 litres of foam should we need it. We are preparing ourselves to receive the emergency services, so we are making sure that we have gone through our own procedures. We have a first-responder sheet, where we are looking at things like, "Where is the incident? What is the local topography in that area? What other tanks might be affected? What other processing units might be affected? What can we shut off? What do we shut down? What other things do we do to make the situation as safe as we possibly can do in preparation for receiving the emergency services?"