Hazardous Materials

Decon 2 and Support Trailer








The purpose of the Sussex County EMS (HazMed) Hazardous Materials Medical Response Team is to provide support to the local fire companies and the Department of Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC). The HazMed Team provides assistance with chemical identification, safety, air monitoring, medical monitoring , patient care, and decontamination to victims of hazardous materials incidents.

The Sussex County EMS HazMed Team is made up of 14 field medics and seven supervisory personnel and administrative staff. All members have received specialized training in hazardous materials through several outside agencies including the National Fire Academy, Delaware State Fire School, Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Defense, and Delaware Emergency Management Agency. Each member attends up to 365 hours of training to become a team member. The team receives training quarterly with lectures and hands-on drills. Each year team members trained an average of sixty hours. With support from the Sussex County Fire Chief’s Association, the team was placed on initial dispatch for all hazardous material incidents.

HazMed Mission Statement

It is the mission of the Sussex County Emergency Medical Services Hazardous Materials Medical Response Team to effectively minimize the health risks to the individual, responder and community associated with the release of harmful or toxic chemicals. Working with the members of the Fire-Rescue Service and under direction of the Incident Commander, the Team will provide toxicology research, entry team medical monitoring, decontamination services and patient care to victims exposed to a hazardous or potentially hazardous chemical. The team works closely with industry and government officials at the local, state, and federal level.


  1. Train Team members to the Hazardous Materials Specialist Level
  2. Provide cold zone support services at a Hazmat incident to include:
    1. Toxicology research
    2. Baseline medical evaluation of entry team members
    3. Level A and B suit-up assistance
    4. Team equipment evaluation and maintenance
    5. Ambulance patient compartment isolation advice and assistance
    6. Emergency medical interventions
  3. Provide warm zone support services at a Hazmat incident to include:
    1. Entry team decontamination
    2. Patient decontamination
    3. Emergency medical interventions
  4. Provide toxicology research services to the Incident Commander
  5. Provide decontamination training to emergency responders
  6. Maintain an adequate inventory of equipment and supplies to mitigate up to 2 incidents within a 24-hour period.
  7. Maintain and support the deployment of the decontamination trailer to incident scenes, hospitals and other areas of the state.
  8. Maintain records of team training and incident deployments.

Decon Setup at Dogfish Brewery      Training with the Delaware National Guard