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RFA Receives $50K Federal Grant for Ethanol Safety Training Program

October 18, 2017


WASHINGTON - This week, the Renewable Fuels Association received a $50,000 federal grant to help continue the RFA's ethanol safety training program efforts. The Assistance for Local Emergency Response Training (ALERT) grant, from the Department of Transportation's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, was awarded to the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC). RFA is among several partners in the grant. The grant, which RFA has previously received in partnership with IAFC, provides hazmat training for volunteer or remote emergency responders to effectively manage emergency events involving incidents involving the transportation of ethanol, crude and other flammable liquids by rail. As part of the ALERT grant, RFA will conduct 10 ethanol safety seminars through mid-September 2018. The seminars will focus on numerous areas of focus, including an introduction to ethanol and ethanol-blended fuels, chemical and physical characteristics of ethanol and hydrocarbon fuels, transportation and transfer, storage and dispensing locations, firefighting foam principles, general health and safety considerations, and storage and pre-planning considerations. "We are pleased to partner with RFA again through a second ALERT grant," said John Woulfe, assistant director of Programs and Technology for IAFC. "Training is critical to ensure the safety of first responders and communities. RFA's ethanol safety training program has done a great job of educating emergency personnel on how to effectively respond to hazmat incidents. We look forward to another successful year of RFA ethanol training events," he said. "We are proud to once again receive an ALERT grant to help train emergency responders," said RFA President and CEO Bob Dinneen. "Safety is always paramount to the ethanol industry and while the vast majority of ethanol is delivered without incident, accidents do happen. We want to ensure emergency personnel have the tools to help mitigate the impacts of any ethanol-related incidents." Since 2010, the RFA has received a collective $546,000 in state and federal grant funding to help local communities in 38 states train on ethanol emergency response tactics and procedures, held 222 ethanol safety seminars, conducted 12 "Train the Trainer" webinars and conducted numerous online ethanol safety training courses.