There is an interesting short article over at www.ProgressiveRailroading.com about a series of ethanol safety seminars that will be held in California next month. The training co-hosted by the Renewable Fuels Association and the Ethanol Emergency Response Coalition (EERC) will address some of the peculiar problems that emergency responders will face with ethanol and ethanol-blended fuels incidents. Since ethanol fuels are typically moved by truck or rail (not pipeline for a number of technical reasons) first responders far from ethanol production facilities (and their associated expertise) are having to deal with ethanol related spills and fires.
The seminars will focus on:
• An introduction to ethanol and ethanol-blended fuels;
• Chemical and physical characteristics of ethanol and hydrocarbon fuels;
• Transportation and transfer of ethanol-blended fuels;
• Storage and dispensing locations;
• Firefighting foam principles and ethanol-blended fuel;
• Health and safety considerations for ethanol-blended fuel emergencies; and
• Tank farm and bulk storage fire incidents
For those not able to attend these seminars (and more are planned outside of California), the EERC has a web site with training materials for local responders to use to familiarize themselves with the ethanol response issues.