Challenge Emergency Response Fees that Seem Excessive
May 7, 2001 12:00 PM
Carriers are often denied entrance to a site where they have a vehicle involved in an accident that requires hazardous materials response. It's also not unusual for them to later receive a bill with inflated fees charged by the local responders, according to a panel discussion during the National Tank Truck Carriers (NTTC) annual conference May 7 in Boston, Massachusetts.
The problems stem from the varied enacted by local, county, and state regulators, said Thomas Moses, president of the Spill Center, Acton, Massachusetts. In some incidents, the responders may rely on the carrier for invaluable information. In others, the situation may be entirely different.
He pointed out that all states have environmental laws relating to hazardous materials spills. About 90% of the counties have regulations on the books, while only about 10% of the cities have taken action. However, the latter percentage is growing, he added.
Some states, such as Massachusetts, have organized response groups to be efficient, well-trained, and cooperative, according to David Ladd of the Massachusetts Department of Fire Services and John Parrow, Massachusetts District 6 hazmat team coordinator.
Ladd encouraged members of NTTC to become involved with the response units in the areas where their companies are located and to develop a means of educating other units.
He also pointed out that carriers can submit an appeal when they believe response unit fees are inflated.