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European project to train first responders on hydrogen safety

03 February 2020

The Comité Technique International de prévention et d’extinction du Feu (CTIF) and its partners have launched a European project to train first responders on hydrogen safety.

The 'HyResponder Project' will underpin and improve resilience and preparedness by enhancing emergency planning and intervention tactics to develop first responder skills to manage and recover from hydrogen related incidents.

The important need for this programme is said to be underlined by the increasing use of hydrogen as a fuel and the requirement to understand how its properties differ from more conventional fuels. Responding firefighters will through HyResponder be provided with hydrogen specific safety training and European wide guidance.

The 3-year project will develop operational and educational training, including virtual reality, in hydrogen safety for first responders and CTIF is involved in seeking to establish a Pan-European standard for responder trainers. The standard will be developed from observation and discussion with trainers from at least 10 different European countries who will attend a bespoke course in hydrogen safety, which they can then use back to their home countries.

The work will also be used to modify the European Emergency Response Guide (ERG) that will incorporate state of the art intervention strategies and tactics to be used to aid first responders involved in hydrogen incidents across the globe.

Involving 16 partners, the €1m project is coordinated by Ulster University.

The International Association of Fire and Rescue Services CTIF representative is Dennis Davis, special adviser to the CTIF Executive Committee and a member of the UK national committee the Fire Sector Federation.

The programme is funded jointly by the Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking (FCH 2 JU) under the EU Horizon 2020.