October 22, 2015

Albany Fireboat Demonstrates New Foam Firefighting Capabilities to Fight Crude Oil or Other Ignitable Liquid Fires

The New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES) Office of Fire Prevention and Control (OFPC) and the Albany Fire Department today demonstrated the Class B foam firefighting capabilities now available on the city’s fireboat, Marine 1. With this new foam firefighting capability, Marine 1 now can combat incidents on or near the Hudson River or nearby waterways involving crude oil and other ignitable liquids.

OFPC and the Albany Fire Department (AFD) demonstrated Marine 1’s new foam firefighting capabilities at Jennings Landing in Albany on Thursday afternoon.  City of Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan, Albany Fire Department Chief Warren Abriel and OFPC’s Deputy State Fire Administrator Francis Nerney delivered remarks at today’s event.

OFPC and AFD worked cooperatively to develop a Class B foam capability for Marine 1 to give the fireboat the ability to fight crude oil fires and provide additional angles to attack ignitable liquid fires on land near the shore.  OFPC provided AFD with the Class B foam, a special foam nozzle and related equipment to outfit Marine 1.

Today’s demonstration supports the ongoing goals of the New York State Foam Task Force, formed at Governor Cuomo’s direction, to provide leading-edge firefighting equipment to firefighters to address the challenges posed by the transportation of crude oil by rail and water across New York.  When mixed with water, Class B Foam forms a blanket over ignitable liquids, suppressing blazes and preventing them from spreading or reigniting.

DHSES Commissioner John Melville said, “Marine 1’s new firefighting capabilities strengthen Albany Fire Department’s ability to fight fires at the terminals and facilities in or near the Port of Albany, including the Buckeye and Global terminals, or incidents involving ship or barge traffic on the Hudson River.  Up until today, this type of maritime Class B foam capability was not readily available in the area.  This new capability will help improve community safety on and along the Hudson River waterfront.”

Mayor Kathy Sheehan said, “As public servants, our first job is to make sure people are safe, and that’s what this collaboration has done.  Thank you to the New York State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services, the State Office of Fire Prevention and Control, and the Albany Fire Department for working together to find another tool for putting out potential fuel fires on the Hudson River or along its banks, including those from a crude oil spill.”

State Fire Administrator Bryant Stevens said, The partnership between OFPC and AFD can serve as a model for how the state can work with local fire departments that operate a fireboat with appropriate capacity to add Class B capabilities.  Using Class B foam to suppress fires allows AFD to provide additional safeguards to the public in the event of a crude oil spill or fire."

Albany Fire Department Chief Warren Abriel said, “One of the most challenging evolutions in the fire service is the applying of firefighting foam on the river from a floating platform.  We are happy to report that Marine 1 is now able to apply foam from its nozzle while moving on the Hudson River.  This will expand our capabilities when faced with a fire in a pleasure craft, oil barge, or ocean going oil tanker.  We are also able to apply a large volume of foam inland to assist our land units during a fire at either of the two terminal facilities in the Port of Albany.  Early this summer, OFPC and the Albany Fire Department examined the problem and worked together to develop a very effective solution to this unique situation.”


Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES) and its four offices -- Counter Terrorism, Emergency Management, Fire Prevention and Control, and Interoperable and Emergency Communications -- provide leadership, coordination and support for efforts to prevent, protect against, prepare for, respond to, and recover from terrorism and other man-made and natural disasters, threats, fires and other emergencies.  For more information, visit the DHSES Facebook page, follow @NYSDHSES on Twitter, or visit dhses.ny.gov.

The New York State Office of Fire Prevention and Control advances public safety through firefighter training, education, fire prevention, investigative, special operations, and technical rescue programs. OFPC offers these services to firefighters and emergency responders, government agencies, public and private colleges, and the citizens of New York State.


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