Man Down Drill and Tour of Airgas, an Air Liquide company
By Modena Fire Company
November 15, 2021

On Monday evening November 15, 2021 the Modena Fire Company along with the Westwood Fire Company participated in a small drill at the Airgas Company on Modena Road in South Coatesville Borough.

A few weeks before this evening the Chief officer went to a meeting with Prakash Kadam the plant manager of the location, the purpose of this meeting was to discuss doing a drill while the reginal manger was in town in a few weeks. This drill would be a man down situation around the loading/unloading truck pads. This drill at Airgas request was to be on a smaller scale and only take around 30 minutes.

On Monday evening the drill started with a Liquid Nitrogen leak coming from a broken hose that was loading a truck on Scale #2 creating the Vapor cloud in the loading area. The truck driver pulled the Emergency Shutdown switch to “STOP” the loading pump, Plant operator was notification in the control room that the ESD switch has been activated, The driver attempted to close the tanker valve but was not able to isolate the tanker valve due to being overcome and lack of Oxygen, Plant manager then made 911 call activating local emergency services.

The company was dispatched and units made the response, once on scene met the plant manager at the front gate which is the plants evocation point. Chief's were given a situation report. Two crews of 4 were assembled and assigned rescue and back up. The rescue crew made entry to the facility on air and made there way to the victim in the loading area. After quick evaluation of victim removed him to a safe zone where decon was done and patient care. All this took place within nine minutes of units arriving.

Although a much smaller scale drill then we would have liked all in all it was a good one, many of our newer people have never even been in the plant so following the drill the plant manager took personnel around and gave them a tour showing them hazards and emergency shut offs, they also went over the same thing on the trucks witch we would more like to encounter on the road in a vehicle accident.

We like to thank Plant Manager Prakash Kadam for setting up this drill and for the unexpected dinner you provided afterwards. There are plains to meet once again in the spring and set up a much larger drill for more of our surrounding companies and county Hazmat team.

Units: Engine 37-1, Engine 37-2, Ambulance 37-2, Command 37
Mutual Aid: Rescue 44