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Hazardous materials (Hazmat)

The materials made for our commercial and domestic use often have an impact on human and animal life as well as the wider environment.

We have a group of experienced Hazardous Materials and Environmental Protection Officers (HMEPO). The group responds to any hazardous material incident, defined as:

"Any substance or occurrence which has the potential to cause injury, sickness, death, or environmental pollution from exposure, inhalation, ingestion or absorption."

They are trained and qualified at the national Fire Service College. This group of officers provide an immediate response, giving guidance and support to Incident Commanders at a range of incidents. This can be pre-determined or on request, direct from the incident ground/location.

The officers use a nationally recognised chemical information and actions database called Chemdata. They also have book-based information.

The group has close links with the Environment Agency. They can also call on scientific specialists, contracted to the Service for specific chemical, radiation, and asbestos support. The group also provides advice and support to the Service away from the safety-critical phase.

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