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Joplin Tornado Debris Segregation/Separation

Joplin EF-5 Tornado Debris Separation

Location: Joplin, MO

Client: US Army Corps of Engineers, Kansas City District

EMR was awarded a contract for debris segregation in response to an EF5 tornado that hit Joplin, Missouri on May 22, 2011, one of the country’s deadliest tornadoes in over 60 years. Immediate response was critical, and EMR had personnel onsite to assess the conditions and begin writing project plans within two hours of the task order award. EMR mobilized 15 professional staff members within 18 hours following the disaster. Within 36 hours, we had 47 people onsite including a project manager, safety supervisor, environmental hygienist, safety and environmental technicians, equipment operators, and project support personnel, making up five segregation crews. Each crew consisted of a certified asbestos supervisor, an equipment operator and four laborers. All personnel were required to have completed at least a 32-hour safety course or the 40-hour HAZWOPER training. Crews separated debris and removed it from the right-of-way, while minimizing the impact on local traffic. Debris consisted of trees, limbs, logs, boats, lumber, roofing, rocks, dead animals, trash, and other assorted items brought in by high winds.

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