The HRMMST is trained and equipped to provide warm zone triage, decontamination, and provide monitoring and detection services and supplement the capabilities of the regional hazardous materials teams and healthcare facilities in responding to a WMD/TIC incident. The HRMMST is available to all Hampton Roads’ public safety agencies and healthcare facilities when mass casualty support is required. It is critically important that victims exposed to nerve agents are decontaminated in addition to having the nerve agent antidote administered to them. HRMMST members are trained to provide WARM ZONE triage of, and lifesaving interventions to, victims exposed to WMD agents and toxic industrial chemicals. Interventions include antidote administration, airway management and hemorrhage control.
The HRMMST is also trained and equipped to operate a “decontamination corridor.” The decontamination corridor is a transition area from the HOT ZONE to WARM ZONE, an undress area, a decontamination area, a redress area, and finally a transition area from WARM ZONE to COLD ZONE. All HRMMST members have been trained in donning and doffing personal protective equipment with respiratory protection ranging from Level IV ensembles through Level II ensembles (IAW NFPA 1994) using N95, PAPR and SCBA respirators. The team is equipped with four ASAP Shelters, which serve as undress and redress facilities.
The HRMMST also deploys a TVI three-lane decontamination shelter (male ambulatory, nonambulatory, and female ambulatory). The decontamination corridor is supplemented with
barrier fencing, lighting, and a flash water heater and propane heaters for the undress/redress facilities. The HRMMST is equipped to provide both WET and DRY decontamination.
The HRMMST uses FIBERTECT Dry Decon wipes/pads, which are also used by the military.
The HRMMST decontamination equipment also includes monitoring and detection equipment that is expressly used for the purpose of identifying whether a victim is free of contamination. (Less emphasis is placed on recognition of the contaminate.) HRMMST members are also trained in the use and operation or pH paper, M8 paper, Photo Ionization Detectors (PID), AP2Cs, Gamma Rae dosimeters, Ludlum Response Kits, and Radiological Portal Monitors.
Finally, the HRMMST, in cooperation with the Southside and Peninsula Regional Hazardous Materials Teams and area hospitals, developed a regional Mass Casualty Decontamination Guide. The deconatmination guide provides a concise reference to set up and execute mass decontamination, by aligning terminology and operating procedures among public safety agencies and healthcare facilities.