Team Dover exercises fuel spill containment

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Aaron J. Jenne
  • 436th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
Team Dover emergency responders from several base agencies participated in a fuel spill exercise April 20, 2017, here.

The scenario: a hurricane struck the coast of Delaware and approximately 2.5 million gallons of Jet-A fuel spilled when a housing container was damaged. The high winds spread fuel outside the permanent containment area surrounding the silos. One person suffered full-body exposure to the fuel and needed immediate medical treatment.

The exercise, conducted under the Commander’s Inspection Program, was designed to fulfill annual requirements and test the emergency response capabilities and readiness of the installation, said Tech. Sgt. Rachel Weis, 436th Airlift Wing Inspector General NCO in charge of wing exercises.

“The exercise tested the base’s ability to respond to real world situations based on historical events and real world scenarios,” Weis said. “We worked with our mission partners to both meet inspection requirements and effectively test our capabilities to respond to a catastrophic event.”

Members from the 436th Security Forces Squadron; 436th Civil Engineer Squadron’s Fire Department and Infrastructure and Utilities shop; 436th AW Emergency Management; 436th Medical Operations Squadron ambulance response team; and 436th Aerospace Medicine Squadron’s bioenvironmental engineering flight came together to provide a unified response to the simulated threat.

All involved agencies provided coordinated response under the direction of the on-scene commander, Tech. Sgt. Scott Morisette, 436th CES Fire Department NCOIC of logistics.

“This was a great learning experience for all of us,” Morisette said. “This was my first time as the on-scene commander for this type of emergency response and also my first time interacting with some of these agencies. We all have our own terminology and ways of communicating, so it’s very important that we practice like this so we’re prepared if something like this were to ever happen in real life. Team Dover is more than capable of providing top notch emergency response in any situation, and exercises like these just help us be more prepared and proficient if the need ever arises.”

As the exercise wrapped up and responders packed up their gear to return to their workplace, Weis and the rest of Team Dover’s Wing Inspection Team began comparing notes to identify exceptional moments and areas for improvement.

“The exercise was a success,” Weis said. “We met all of our internal and external training objectives. It was a chance for us to strengthen our plans and programs with internal and external agencies. We were able to uncover some strengths and suggest some improvement points, which will make us more prepared for emergency response in the future.”