Industrial Firefighting

Calumet Water Reclamation Plant Explosion and Building Collapse: Lessons Learned

Issue 6 and Volume 173.

By Timothy Walsh At approximately 11:00 a.m. on August 30, 2018, the Chicago (IL) Fire Department (CFD) was dispatched to an explosion and a building collapse with trapped occupants on the far southeast side of the city. The standard response for this run within the city is a still and box alarm with additional companies from the Special Operations Division. Initial Response The initial response included four engines, two trucks, one tower ladder, three battalion chiefs, one deputy district chief, one additional truck for the rapid intervention team (RIT) and an additional battalion chief for RIT, three ambulances, and one emergency medical services (EMS) chief. The Special Operations companies included two heavy rescue companies, Squads 1 and 5; Building Collapse units 5-2-1 and 5-2-2; Battalion Chief 5-1-5; Special Operations 5-1-9; Special Operations Safety; and Chief of Special Operations 2-1-28. (1-2) An overview of the structural collapse after the explosion. (Photos…

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