Mass Decon

Issue 110 and Volume 162.

BY JOHN “SKIP” COLEMAN September 11, 2001, has changed the fire service profoundly, not only in the United States but also around the world. New words (or words that were seldom used before), procedures, tools, and policies have been developed and implemented. Ten years ago, how many departments had a policy in place that gave assignments and implemented activities and activations if we went to a “threat level red”? I’m not sure the fire service knew what “threat level red” was 10 years ago. Mass decon is another one of those terms and procedures brought to the forefront after September 11. This issue brought more responses than I had anticipated. Of the 34 respondents, 24 said they believe that training in mass decon is worth the effort. Fifteen indicated that they trained with outside entities such as EMS and hospitals. Only two stated outright that training in mass decon was…

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