Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District has enhanced their response capabilities for Hazardous Materials Incidents. Back in February 2015, the Manatee County Sheriff’s Department donated their Bomb Squad vehicle to the Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District.

This vehicle is a 1994 Freightliner that was specially designed for the Sheriff’s Department. After receiving this response vehicle, the Districts Hazardous Materials Team spent countless hours in removing the Sheriff’s Department decals, re-arranging inside and outside shelves, installing radio’s, replacing blue emergency lights with red lights, and buffing the exterior to make it ready for a new decal design and a lot of other work to make this apparatus operational for hazardous materials responses.

The vast majority of this work was conducted in-house by Battalion Chief Chris Gould, Lieutenant Sean Conner, Firefighter/EMT Brandon Ellis, Firefighter/EMT Mike Geiser, Firefighter/EMT Derek Foss, Firefighter/EMT Brian Godden, Firefighter/EMT Dave Sedgley, Firefighter/Paramedic Mike White, Firefighter/EMT Chris Burghdurf, Firefighter/EMT Sam Collins, Firefighter/EMT Jarek Dehart, Battalion Chief Herb Smith, Lieutenant Dan Anderson, Firefighter/EMT Mike Bloski, Firefighter/EMT Ed Tumolo, Firefighter/EMT Jason Weissman, Firefighter/EMT Tim Keusch, Firefighter/EMT Robert Davis, Firefighter/EMT Pete Saxman, Battalion Chief Rick Blanco, Firefighter/EMT Duane Ely, Firefighter/EMT Justin Sperko, Firefighter/Paramedic Kyle Eldridge, Firefighter/EMT Jordan Velazquez, Firefighter/EMT Dwayne McKeaver, Lieutenant Chad D’Agostino, Firefighter/EMT Steve Gibson, Lieutenant Robert Thayer, Firefighter/EMT Travis Dowell and Firefighter/EMT Rich Gatanis (Graphics), many are State of Florida Certified Hazardous Materials Technicians. The Fire Commissioners and the Administration of Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District truly appreciates the dedication of these employee’s and extends our “Thank you” for a job well done. Their work has saved the District money that can now be used for equipment for our Team.

Our Hazardous Materials Response vehicle will be able to handle all types of hazardous material incidents dealing with liquid, gas and solid chemical leaks and fires including bio-hazardous decontamination.

Southern Manatee Fire Rescue District operates a Hazardous Material Team that consists of 30 Firefighters that are 160 hour State of Florida Certified Hazardous Materials Technicians. The Districts goal is to be able to staff this response vehicle 24/7 by the end of 2016.

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