DOT ERG Background

Time: 6:45 am
Local Weather: Crisp fall morning with light winds from the Southeast at 3 to 5 miles per hour.


Fairview is a community of 75,000 people. This community makes up a Midwestern metro complex of 1.5 million people with 13 subdivisions. Smith Ranch is a newly annexed subdivision and golf course. There is a new shopping mall supporting the area, gas stations, and other shops that are beginning to be built as well. The Smith family leased their ranch to oil companies who have many wells in several different locations around the golf course.


The Fire Department is made up of three stations with two engines at each station. One engine is manned by 3 career personnel; the second is for volunteer response. There is also a rescue unit (2 personnel) at station 1, a chief and a ladder truck at station 2 (3 firefighters), and an ambulance (2 paramedics) that responds from the hospital. The total manpower is 15 FD personnel, 2 Hospital with another 10-15 volunteers that normally respond. Additional response from a mutual aid system will bring 25 additional responders in 30 minutes and at least 50 in 1 hour.


Fairview law enforcement consists of 20 officers from the local police force. There were 2 officers on duty at the time of the event. There are 2 county sheriffs in the area and 10 additional men who can be provided within 1 hour according to the Emergency Response Plan. The local police officer is on the scene shortly after the incident and a second law enforcement officer is on the way. Call back will take 1 to 2 hours to get 10 more officers.

Background ^
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IntroductionProceed »

Scenario Map

Use the tabs on the left to learn important information you will need when responding to this scenario.

When you are ready click "Proceed".

Rolloverto see images.

Proceed »

Do you have a plan?Proceed »

Scenario DescriptionProceed »

At dawn the 911 center begins to receive multiple reports of a large explosion, or big "boom", out by the Smith Ranch golf course and sub-division on County Rd 33.

Smith ranch has several gathering wells drawing from a large gas deposit in the area. These wells feed a grid that runs to a transmission line that runs to the regional processing plant. The plant removes the H2S and other impurities from the gas and then sends it downstream to manufacturing and distribution companies. There is no fire, but subsequent calls have been describing a big hole in the ground and gas blowing out of the hole.

Excercise #1 - Initial Response

During the initial response, the chief, engine 2 and ladder 1 respond from headquarters. Engine 1 responds from the north manned with 3 responders. An ambulance is dispatched from the hospital.

Where would you place your apparatus? Drag and drop each unit to the spot you decide is the best position.

Click the images below to hear more details.

Size Up and Hazard AssessmentProceed »

Identification of Product, Markers and Hazards

Rancher Smith leased rights of way (ROW) on the golf course to several utilities.

Refer to the map. How many utilities are involved in this emergency?

Which of these utilities may be involved in the leak?

Scenario 4 Pipeline Cable DryGas Pipeline2 Cable2 DryGas2

Pipeline Control Centers

Click on each marker to call the Operations Centers

Response Information Resources

Click on each information resource.

Each resource will provide information based on their mission and the parameters they expect their information to be used. Remember, each document or organization can help!

After reviewing each information resource, play the audio clip below before your proceed.

Pipeline Control center

Listen to important information about the pipeline release from the control center

You need help... Operators need informationProceed »

Protect People, Property and the Environment

You need to establish evacuation zones. You are aware of the potential for flammability and now suspect the natural gas may be toxic. If the natural gas is contaminated with hydrogen sulfide, what is the relationship between flammability and toxicity?

Drag one red zone (flammability) and one blue zone (toxicity) to the map. Place them on the spot where you believe evacuation should be conducted.When you are done, check your answers.

Note: This exercise is not about the exactness of the plume or the distance of the evacuation. It is about first responder actions in the initial stages of the evacuation process.

Hydrogen Sulfide WarningsProceed »

Excercise - Fire Safety PPE

Based on the information you have, can you perform defensive operations and search and rescue as defined in the DOT ERG?

According to the DOT ERG what is the appropriate PPE to wear for this event?
Choose one level of protective clothing and one level of respriatory protection.

Detection Instrumentation

You have been assigned to monitor the area of homes in Smith Ranch along 10th Street for hazardous atmospheres.

Choose the right instrument below for the job. Remember to make your selection with regard to safety.

Proceed »


Training Scenario #4 - Gathering / Transmission Line Failure