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DOT Announces $5.9 Million in First Responder Grants to Help Protect Communities From Flammable Liquids by Rail Incidents

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Transportation Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA)  today announced grants totaling $5.9 million to provide hazardous materials training for volunteer or remote emergency responders. The Assistance for Local Emergency Response Training (ALERT) grants will go to three non-profit organizations  who will provide training for  incidents involving shipments of crude oil, ethanol and other flammable liquids by rail.

The Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act of 2015 (P.L. 113-235) allowed PHMSA to use money recovered from prior year Hazardous Materials Emergency Preparedness (HMEP) grants to fund the ALERT grants.

“Safety is our top priority and the ALERT grants will help first responders, especially volunteer firefighters in rural or remote parts of the country, prepare for and respond to incidents involving flammable liquids,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “It’s critical that first responders have the information and training they need to respond to these types of incidents, and is one of more than a dozen actions the Department has taken in recent months to strengthen the safe transportation of crude oil, ethanol and other flammable liquids by rail.”

Grants from PHMSA are funded by annual user registration fees paid by shippers and carriers of certain hazardous materials in commerce. During grant period 2013-14, HMEP grants funded more than 91,000 first responders in initial or refresher hazardous materials response training, over 1,300 new or revised hazardous materials emergency response plans, and over 950 hazardous materials exercises.

“Nearly 25,000 additional firefighters, police and other first responders are expected to benefit from this one-year realignment of hazmat training grants,” said PHMSA Administrator Marie Therese Dominguez.

Awardee Funding Distribution
 ALERT Grants

Awardee Funding Distribution for Assistance for Local Emergency Response Training (ALERT) Grants

Nonprofit Grantees

Total Awarded

  1. University of Findlay (All Hazards Training Center), Findlay, OH


  1. International Association of Fire Chiefs, Fairfax, VA


  1. Center for Rural Development, Somerset, KY




The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration develops and enforces regulations for the safe, reliable, and environmentally sound operation of the nation's 2.6 million mile pipeline transportation system and the nearly 1 million daily shipments of hazardous materials by land, sea, and air. Please visit or for more information.

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Updated: Thursday, October 13, 2016
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