NABC in Manhattan offers training for first responders

KSNT News Reporter Katya Leick (seen in yellow suit) joins Manhattan Fire Department personnel during Haz-Mat training. August 26m 2015

MANHATTAN (KSNT) — If your family is in danger, you expect their rescuers to know what to do. First responders need to know to deal with all kinds of trouble, even hazardous materials.

The Manhattan Fire Department is one of the first crews to get to almost any emergency and we expect them to know how to deal with any situation, which is why their firefighters participate in monthly training.

“It’s good for if we ever have an event, be whatever kind of HAZMAT event it is, it’s good training for us to always refresh,” says Battalion Chief Mark Whitehair with Manhattan Fire Department.

HAZMAT training involves dealing with groups of people who need to be decontaminated.

“It’s extremely important,” says Gary Sevenans a participant and fire truck driver. “The last thing we want to do is get our other crew members contaminated by these substances or we get our family members contaminated by these kind of substances,”

Which is why the Kansas State University’s National Agricultural Biosecurity center, or NABC, is holding animal disease response training. It prepares them for things like bird flu.

Ken Burton with the NABC says it will “give that base of knowledge so they can communicate the information that they need to the other agencies that they are working with and also get a good feel for why they are doing what they are doing in the response.”

They provide training to ensure that state and local first responders are prepared for whatever comes their way.

“The planning and the education before something like that happens is priceless,” say Burton, because you can’t put a price on protecting your family. The NABC courses are available now for agencies to sign up and schedule.

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