The nation’s police and firefighters will continue to be among the best-prepared in the world to deal with hazardous materials incidents thanks to federal grants of over $21 million from the U.S. Department of Transportation.
Last Thursday, Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) Administrator Cynthia Quarterman announced a Hazardous Materials Emergency Preparedness (HMEP) grant of over $300,000 to the State of Maryland.
Baltimore County Fire Chief John Hohman highlights the benefits of USDOT HMEP Grants to the local community while Baltimore County Councilman Kevin Kamenetz (left) and PHMSA Administrator Cynthia Quarterman (center) look on.
Quarterman made the announcement during a visit to a Baltimore County fire station in Lutherville, MD, where she joined Baltimore County Fire Chief John Hohman observing county and local firefighters in a hazardous materials response exercise.
“Safety is our top priority,” said Administrator Quarterman. “These funds will help local emergency responders become prepared to expertly handle hazmat emergencies and protect their communities.”
Administrator Quarterman also presented the PHMSA Public Safety Award to the Baltimore County Fire Department in recognition of their outstanding hazardous materials emergency preparedness safety, training, and community planning efforts.
PHMSA Administrator Quarterman (center) presents the PHMSA Public Safety Award to Baltimore County Fire Chief John Hohman. The green and blue hazmat suits protect firefighters during response to hazmat incidents.
The grant to Maryland was awarded under the Hazardous Materials Emergency Preparedness (HMEP) Grants Program administered by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s PHMSA.
The HMEP Grants Program is designed to assure that states and local emergency responders are planning and training for emergency response to hazardous materials incidents. The Program also helps a large number of the nation’s approximately 4,000 local emergency planning committees prepare and carry out hazardous materials emergency response plans and conduct studies to better understand the risks of transporting hazardous materials through local communities.
Since 1993, approximately 2.5 million first responders and others have received training assistance with HMEP grants.