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Madison Fire Department
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Hazardous Materials Incident Team

Madison's Hazardous Incident Team (HIT) is a Type II regional "Level A" hazardous materials response teams designated by the State of Wisconsin to provide assistance in hazardous materials emergencies. The team can be activated for any incident involving a hazardous materials release, leak, explosion, injury, or potential of immediate threat to life, the environment, or property. The Madison Regional Response Team covers the Wisconsin counties of Sauk, Columbia, Dodge, Dane, Iowa, Grant, Lafayette, Green and Rock.

Within Dane County, the team provides communities with "Level B" and "Level A" hazardous materials support. The Madison Fire Department works with the local Civil Support Team to augment the abilities of hazardous materials response.

There are three levels (Level I, II, and III) of hazardous material incident responses that vary in the amount of personnel and equipment needed, as well as the level of protection needed at a given incident. Level I incidents can be readily controlled and stabilized by properly trained and equipped first responders. Level I incidents do not require the HIT to respond to the scene, although HIT personnel might be contacted for technical assistance. Level II incidents require the expertise and resources of the hazardous incident core team. HIT core personnel, including the HIT Leader, HIT Safety, and two entry personnel, would arrive on location to assist in on-site advisory, on-site assessment and analysis, on-site identification, and on-site mitigation. Level III incidents are classified as emergencies and require a full response with expanded personnel above the core team. Adequate satellite personnel will be transported to the scene to conduct team operations. For in-city Level III responses, a total of 19 personnel are required to fully staff the hazardous incident team. For out-of-city Level III responses, a total of 12 personnel are required to staff the hazardous incident team. All hazardous material emergency operations (Levels I, II, and III) follow an eight step process including site control, identification of product(s), hazard & risk assessment, personal protective equipment evaluation, information and resource coordination, control measures, decontamination, and termination activities.

Image: HIT 6 Bus/Mobile Command CenterThe core members of Madison's Hazardous Incident Team are located at Station 7. There are 30 core team members with specialized hazardous materials operations training. In addition, there are over 41 satellite personnel located throughout the 11 fire stations that have hazardous materials training and are ready for calls in the event of a hazardous materials incident. The HIT 7 trailer and mobile command center is located at Station 7 and the HIT 2 vehicle with trailer is located at Station 2. HIT 7 contains all the necessary equipment and tools to operate as a mobile command center at a hazardous materials incident. This includes level A, B, and C personal protective equipment, self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA), communications equipment, hazardous materials databases, maps, weather station, audio & video equipment, hazardous materials monitors and detectors, decontamination equipment, and other assorted equipment.
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The training coordinator for the team is Lieutenant Rob Ready and he oversees the weekly training each Monday for all members. For more information or to request the Hazardous Materials Team for an outreach event contact the Division Chief of Special Teams at 608-266-4886. For more information on the Wisconsin Regional Response Team, contact Wisconsin Emergency Management at 1-800-943-0003 (press 2).