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  • Evacuation alarms for industrial complex

    How does the industrial plants in your area handle plant evacuations, ie Alarms? Do they have a fire brigade or emergency response team?

    I am the fire chief at my power plant. Our plant is Very Large, with 440 permenment employees and 2500 contractors. Right now we have 5 alarms, or tones. This seems to be too many for people to remember.

    I believe 3 would be succificient. These 3 would be for Inside Safe Refuge, (Weather, fire in Power House, etc) Outside Safe Refuge (Fire, bomb threat, chemcial leak)and an All Clear alarm or tone. We have a PA system to give further instructions.

    I have been tasked with researching what other industries are doing.

    Please tell me what you have and what are your thoughts.

    Thanks in advance
    Glenn
    "Flochief"

  • #2
    We also have a large facility with approx. 1500 company employees present on weekdays and around 2000 contractors. We have what we call the All Area Page system, which is a site-wide intercom which only we (Emergency Services) has access to. All site emergencies are announced over the system (proceeded by a warble tone to get everyone's attention).

    Since our site is comprised of approx. 25 separate, distinct operating units, or "blocks", when dealing with a chemical release, we have 3 categories:

    Category "A"....small releases confined to the originating block
    Category "B"....larger releases which will affect other blocks outside the originating block
    Category "C"...Major release expected to affect outside the site (very rare).

    For Category A release, only the affected unit takes precautions. They should know through their internal procedures what precautions to take. Neighboring units know to be alert for changing conditions or further announcements.

    For Category B release, we announce the downwind blocks on the initial page. Again, they know through established protocols what precautions to take. Shelter in place generally by default, unless we give other instructions.

    Fires are also paged, with similar protocols. Ambulance runs are not announced over the AAP (we have a full-time Emergency Services department that responds to all these emergencies, so there's no benefit to alerting the whole site of an ambulance response)

    We have another large site south of us that does not have a site-wide intercom system, so they still use the old "count the bells" system. I feel that making annoucements verbally over the intercom system is more effective, if you have the ability to do so.
    Chief Dwayne LeBlanc
    Paincourtville Volunteer Fire Department
    Paincourtville, LA

    "I have a dream. It's not a big dream, it's just a little dream. My dream — and I hope you don't find this too crazy — is that I would like the people of this community to feel that if, God forbid, there were a fire, calling the fire department would actually be a wise thing to do. You can't have people, if their houses are burning down, saying, 'Whatever you do, don't call the fire department!' That would be bad."
    — C.D. Bales, "Roxanne"

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    • #3
      Oil Refinery - Combination Full Time Fire Department {One Shift Guy and a Straight Daywork Guy M-F} With an Emergency Response Team of roughly 60 people

      We mainly use Radios for dispatching alarms {Medicals, Fires, Spills, Rescues, ETC} on a dedicated frequency used by our Emergency Services and Security Teams - The Same Dispatch goes out over all frequencies as a simulcast alerting Emergency Response Team Members and any area Supervision that needs to get involved

      We are also on a pager system - For those that are off shift we sometimes escalate to 2nd. or 3rd. alarm incidents which require additional manpower. Those Emergency Response Team Members, Off duty Firemen, and Security Personnel will respond from home if available and man the extra equipment that via a text message on either cell phones or A/N Pager ....System works fairly well

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      • #4
        .....Forgot to add. We operate with about 500 -700 employees per day with around 200 - 300 contractors depending on what jobs are operating. We have a Siren System that activates when "The Tones Drop" for Box Alarms {Fire, Spill, Release} anything requiring an evacuation

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        • #5
          Thanks for the info Closet.
          I am really needing info on how your evacuations are conducted. How many different evacuation alarms do you have or does one cover all?
          email or call
          Thanks,
          Glenn
          [email protected]
          478-993-3764

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          • #6
            Evacuations are supposed to occur in all areas upon receipt of an alarm....By Radio, and the Plant Siren System. Sire Activations throughout the Facility are an indication to all without radios that something bad is possibly happening and that Confined Space Work and High Angle work need to Halt. We'll usually broadcast evacuations over the radio as well

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