With the exception of a December training exercise, members of the Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC) met for the final time of 2013 earlier this month.
LEPC committee members are appointed by the State Emergency Response Commission (SERC) and are comprised of elected local officials, law enforcement, civil defense agencies, hospital members, firefighting health transportation agencies and broadcast and print media members. The group is required to develop an emergency plan and comprise a list of all EPA hazardous materials and their location in the county. Annual the plan must be updated and tested either by an actual emergency or a training exercise.
According to county EMA director and Rush County LEPC coordinator Chuck Kemker, recent updates to the local plan and bylaws have been completed and submitted to state officials.
Kemker said that a diesel spill which occurred while fighting a fire in the southern part of the county earlier this year, did not meet the state requirements and as a result, necessitates a training exercise be held in December.
Kemker continued by saying that updates to the Rush County plan have been completed and submitted to the state.
“The local plan now mirrors the template the state uses, that will make it easier for all emergency response parties involved in the event we have a hazardous spill locally,” Kemker said.
Kemker then said the LEPC recently purchased two heaters to be used in conjunction with the decontamination tents purchased earlier this year.
Members voted to retain the current officers for 2014; Marge Amos as treasure, Phil Derringer as secretary and Kemker as coordinator.
Contact: Frank Denzler @ 765.932.2222 x106