HazMat first responders are typically the first line of defence after an unintentional or deliberate release of toxic chemicals. As most first responders know, these releases can pose a wide range of physical health and environmental hazards. And when it comes to the storage, handling or transport of hazardous materials (HazMat), safety is paramount.
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines HazMat as any substance that is potentially harmful to human health or the environment, while in Europe, the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) states that all substances and mixtures meeting the criteria of one or more of the hazard classes in the European Regulation (EC) No 1272/2008 (or CLP Regulation) are considered hazardous.
While there are a multitude of precautions that industries will take to stay safe, in the event of accidental spillage due to a road traffic accident or as the result of an industrial incident, highly trained HazMat crews will be called on to mitigate the threat.
In this blog post we explore eight of the most common hazardous materials that first responders are likely to encounter in the event of an industrial accident or road transport incident.