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Today marks the one-year anniversary of the 2014 Boston Brownstone fire that claimed the lives of two Boston firefighters, Lt. Edward Walsh and Michael Kennedy.  The fire was found to have started from welding that took place on a metal handrail in a unit next door.  The 2014 fire was a nine-alarm fire that took place on March 26, 2014 at 2:42 p.m. in a four-story brick row house at 298 Beacon Street in the Back Bay of Boston. The fire also injured eighteen others, including thirteen firefighters. The fire was believed to have been started by welders working at a nearby iron railing. On June 9, 2014, a report was released concluding that Walsh and Kennedy's deaths were both accidental.  On April 4, a number of fire officials, including Boston Fire Commissioner John Hasson, blamed the fire on sparks originating from welding being done on a nearby iron railing. The welders, according to these officials, were operating without a permit and apparently tried to warn others after the fire started.  However, the welders did not call 911, which prompted Ken Donnelly and other Massachusetts politicians to call for criminal charges to be brought against the welding company.


MARPLOT 5.0.1 is now available for download at

What's changed in MARPLOT 5.0.1?

  • Fixed bug where MARPLOT files could get out of sync when a user had a layer with objects in individual graphics mode, then switched the layer to common graphics mode and added an object.  This bug would result in several error messages appearing in MARPLOT.  The fix prevents this issue from happening to layers in 5.0.1, and it also fixes the problem on any out-of-sync layer (from 5.0) the next time an object is added to the layer.
  • Fixed bug where images for object and layer popup notes where not included in MPZ export files.
  • Fixed bug where taking screenshots did not work on the Lion operating system.
  • Fixed several other small bugs and made minor program improvements, primarily to the way files are imported.

Note: If you're upgrading to MARPLOT 5.0.1 from a previous version, follow the instructions on the download page to ensure that your data is transferred successfully to the new version.

MARPLOT 5.0 is now available for download at The program has been completely redesigned and has many new features.

Note: If you're upgrading to MARPLOT 5.0 from MARPLOT 4.x or MARPLOT 3.x, follow the instructions in the guidance documents (provided on the download page) to ensure that your data is transferred successfully to the new version.

Some MARPLOT 5.0 Highlights:


EDMONTON, Oct. 19, 2013 /CNW/ - The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) deploys a team of investigators to the site of a rail accident west of Edmonton in Gainford, Alberta. The CN train derailed 13 cars including 4 units carrying petroleum crude oil and 9 units carrying liquefied petroleum gas. TSB will gather information and assess the occurrence.

The TSB is an independent agency that advances transportation safety by investigating occurrences in the marine, pipeline, rail and air modes of transportation. It is not the function of the Board to assign fault or determine civil or criminal liability.

SOURCE: Transportation Safety Board of Canada

Availability of DHS Crude By Rail (CBR) Emergency Response 4-Hour Web-based Training. Here is the information concerning course content and registration:

Course Description — Crude By Rail (CBR) Emergency Response 4-Hour Web-based Training

This program is designed for first responders with railroads passing through their jurisdiction. You will learn basic knowledge to respond to incidents involving CBR. The web-based training is designed for your convenience. You decide when and where to start your training.

Instructors teach this program in a format that is easy for you to understand, and it gives you the foundational information needed to make basic protective decisions in the event an incident happens in your jurisdiction.

The program covers:

  • History of crude oil
  • Planning and working with the railroads
  • Basic tank car recognition and design
  • Chemical, physical, and toxic properties of the different crude oil transported
  • Basic site and damage assessment
  • Tactical product control methods, including the application of firefighting foam agents, water and spill control procedures

Each year I received dozens of e-mail questions, as well as from clients with operations in OH, regarding a “requirement” by Ohio Fire Codes to conduct an “annual evacuation drill”.  Since this question seems to be so popular, I thought I should just post my attempt at an FAQ for OH Fire Drills:

1) Does my facility have to conduct a fire drill? Yes

2) If yes, what is the frequency of this drill? At least annually and possible more often depending on the type of business.

3) Does the State of OH require a written evacuation plan, even though my facility is exempt from 29 CFR 1910.38 (e.g. OSHA's Emergency Action Plan std)? Most industrial facilities/businesses in the state of OH are required to have a WRITTEN Evac Plan.

4) Does the State require a written Fire Safety plan, even though my facility is exempt from 29 CFR 1910.39 (e.g. OSHA's Fire Prevention Plan std)? Most industrial facilities/businesses in the state of OH are required to have a WRITTEN Fire Prevention Plan.

5) Do I have to document my Fire Drill was conducted?  Yes, see below for the required data to be documented.

Here are the requirements and support for my answer to the above questions regarding the State of Ohio's "Emergency Planning and Preparedness" (i.e. drills, plans, and training)...

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I am Speaking

Stop by session 721 on

Wednesday 6/10 @ 7:45 a.m.

Process Safety Management

Enforcement Trends and Best Practices

I am also teaching a

1-Day PSM Course

"Implementing a World-Class PSM Program"

Course # 910

as a POST CONF Seminar

on Friday 6/12/15