When Upton residents were concerned about the transloading and transporting of liquid chemicals Upton Fire Chief Goodale was proactive and attended a 10-day training course with the Security and Emergency Response Training Center (SERTC) in Pueblo, Colorado where he was trained as a Hazardous Materials Technician. The training was funded through a grant managed through MEMA in the Commonwealth.
The training Chief Goodale received was based on standards created by the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the National Fire Protection Association and the Office for Domestic Preparedness. Chief Goodale said, “Without a doubt, the training that I received at SERTC helped us with the incident,” referring to the chemical spill on Dec 18. Goodale added, “I would like very much to send other members of our staff to this training program.”
The majority of the Upton Fire Department staff is currently trained at the Hazardous Materials Operations level. In October the staff completed a 24 hour training and refresher program. Chief Goodale said, “We focus much of our training these days on Haz Mat due largely to the operations that take place at the G & U.” This past spring the department conducted a chemical fire suppression training session using a Form Unite donated by the G&U Railroad.