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Fire & Rescue

Always Ready, Always There

Phone: 503-823-3700

Fax: 503-823-3710

55 SW Ash Street, Portland, OR 97204

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HazMat Team

Portland Fire & Rescue’s (PF&R) State Hazardous Materials (HazMat) Response Team is composed of firefighters who have received specialized training in the prevention and mitigation of incidents involving hazardous materials. These firefighters provide this service in addition to their usual firefighting duties.

In the course of their HazMat duties, these individuals are responsible for the safe termination of such complex incidents as fires involving hazardous materials, wrecks involving trucks and semi-trailers carrying chemicals, and medical incidents involving chemical use (and misuse) in the work place as well as in homes. PF&R’s HazMat Team responds to hazardous materials emergencies throughout the City of Portland and Multnomah County. The Team will respond outside our jurisdiction only when requested by the on-scene incident commander or the emergency response agency having jurisdiction.

A hazardous material, by definition, is "any element, compound or substance that poses an unreasonable risk to health or property and which, because of handling, storage, processing or packaging, may have detrimental effects on emergency personnel, the public, equipment and/or the environment."

To safely accomplish this goal, team members are required to maintain a working knowledge of the following:

  • Highly specialized chemical protective clothing
  • Field use of complex scientific monitoring equipment
  • Safe methods of containing chemical spills
  • Correct techniques for "off-loading" chemicals from damaged containers into intact containers
  • Various reference materials to determine hazards of chemicals
  • Proper methods and locations for disposal of hazardous wastes
  • Basic chemistry