SEOUL, March 21 (Korea Bizwire) — The National Fire Agency (NFA) has announced a plan to train a group of firefighters specializing in responding to chemical accidents as part of efforts to upgrade the agency’s overall capability in dealing with chemical accidents.
The NFA said Sunday it enforced a new rule to operate a chemical accident response educational program at the National Fire Service Academy in Gongju, some 160 kilometers south of Seoul, as well as to provide related licenses and certification.
Under this new rule, the National Fire Service Academy will start operating an ‘educational program for chemical accidents’ at a training center with facilities and equipment needed to respond to chemical accidents.
The program will be divided into one for the 1st degree qualification course that covers professional leak prevention and the operation of decontamination stations, and the other for the 2nd degree qualification course that covers the control of leaks and polluted areas.
According to the National Institute of Chemical Safety, the number of chemical accidents has been on an upward trend, rising from 58 cases in 2019 to 75 in 2020 and 92 in 2021.
At present, the NFA operates a total of 10 chemical rescue teams that are exclusively dedicated to chemical accidents.
For the cities and provinces without their own chemical rescue team, special rescue teams directly affiliated with regional fire headquarters are performing the task of responding to chemical accidents.
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