Home Podcasts THMG045 – APIE, Part III

THMG045 – APIE, Part III


In episode three of a five-part series, Mike and Bob continue to discuss APIE and how it applies to hazmat.

Complete Show Notes

6:45 Sizing Up Containers at the Scene

  • Perform a container evaluation to figure out what’s actually going on
  • A good size-up on the container can tell you a lot about what’s going to happen and can help you determine your next move(s)
  • The size of the container doesn’t make much of a difference – damage is still damage regardless

8:10 General Hazardous Materials Behavior Model

  • Containers don’t just open themselves – it’s our job to figure out why they failed and mitigate the problem
  • There are three kinds of stresses that can lead to failure: thermal, mechanical, and chemical
  • Part of the size-up is determining whether removing the stress from the container will make things better, worse, or do nothing at all
  • Thermal damage
    • Simply refers to heat and cold – temperature change can have a big effect on the container
    • Heat stress can create a pressure that might exceed the capacity of the container, even if it isn’t damaged
    • Cold can do the exact opposite thing, regardless of whether the container is damaged
    • Additionally, cold can make the metal brittle and weak to compromise the integrity of the container
  • Mechanical damage
    • Damage that occurs when one object physically interacts with another – leads to punctures, abrasions, dents, gouges, tears, etc.
    • In most cases, you can’t assess mechanical damage until you’re actually in front of the container
    • Knowing how to stop or slow down leaks is the difference between good techs and not so good techs
    • As you’re trying to stop or slow down the leak, you should also think about how to contain it – this can be a better option than stopping it
  • Chemical damage
    • Rust is probably the most prevalent example of chemical damage – refers to the oxidization of iron
    • Tanks can corrode due to acids, bases, or oxidizing chemicals
    • Tanks can also be contaminated by other chemicals that cause heat and over-pressurization
    • The removal of an inhibitor can lead to dangerous polymerization
    • An endothermic reaction could create a vacuum within the container
    • Remember that chemical damage doesn’t just have to be within the container
    • Having a good idea of what happened to the container can help us predict what’s going to happen to the material as it leaves the container
    • The opening of the container is directly related to the stress that was put on the container

24:30 Container Material Release

  • Rapid release essentially refers to the release of a pressurized container – can be solid, liquid, or gas
  • Rapid release can be caused by punctures, tears, splits, cracks, etc. – location of the damage affects how the substance exits the container
  • Liquids can escape due to head pressure or pressure built up from vapor pressure within the tank
  • Even the size of the damage to the container helps us determine whether we have a simple trickle or a catastrophic failure of the container
  • This is important because we have to know whether we need to stop the leak or whether damage control is our first step

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