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MJ Podcast #186: Hydrogen Explosion, The Mosque, Power Failure, and Acid

There is a ton of stuff packed into Mitigation Journal Podcast #186! Yes, its a long podcast, but after two weeks of reruns; what did you expect? This week we talk about a major event here in Rochester, NY, that is the hydrogen tank explosion at the refueling center on Scottsville Road. This explosion was felt for miles and caused two minor injuries, resulted in the airport being closed, major highway (route 390) and surrounding roadways being closed...and, yes, limiting if not crippling any operation at the County Emergency Operation Center. We'll discuss the need for continuing threat assessment and not letting high hazards grow around critical infrastructure.

A short talk about the controversial Mosque near Ground Zero in NYC...my opinion is that it is like adding any other high hazard into an area...and it is a high hazard...as I believe that there will be an increased risk for domestic terrorism related to the construction of the Islamic Center. I hope I am wrong.

And turning to darker thoughts, blackouts and power grid failures (no pun intended) Nobody wants to talk about this or address planning for widespread and prolonged loss of electricity, except me, of course. What would we do without electricity for weeks, months or years? I think this could be at the top of disaster scenarios in the Nation.

Finally on this addition, we talk about unexpected hazards at "routine" events. Six emergency medical technicians were exposed to hydrochloric acid while treating the victim of a motor vehicle collision. While the conditions and situation remains unclear, the EMTs were treated and transported to a local hospital. This type of incident further indicates the need for situational awareness an all events...not just those we think were intentional. I did get a number of emails on the topic eluding to the opinion that "we cannot expect EMS to deal" with chemical events. I posted a reply on the blog and give my commentary at the end of the podcast...so be sure to listen to the end.

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