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Metro Washington, DC-Area Firm Mobilizes Resources to Assess Gulf Oil Spill from Land, Sea and Air

Multidisciplinary workforce helping to monitor impact of spill and cleanup operations

July 20, 2010

FAIRFAX, Va. Consolidated Safety Services, together with its subsidiary Dynamac Corporation, (CSS) today announced that it has deployed scientists, data analysts, IT specialists, and technicians to the Gulf coast in support of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and in coordination with the U.S. Coast Guard. Working under five separate contracts, CSS is assisting with assessment of air and water quality, spill reconnaissance, and shoreline cleanup in the Gulf States of Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. CSS began placing qualified personnel in the field within 24 hours of its first response request. The company continues to train new personnel, drawing from the Gulf community and those impacted by the spill, for rotation into the field and as standbys for new deployments. In support of EPA and NOAA’s missions, CSS is now contributing to three critical oil spill response efforts:  

Oil and Dispersant Detection and Measurement  

For EPA’s National Decontamination Team, CSS supports the Airborne Spectral Photometric Environmental Collection Technology (ASPECT) program, which is being flown to help determine the location and movement of the oil. This information is then being utilized by the U.S. Coast Guard to position oil skimmer ships in the Gulf. Dr. Robert Kroutil, a scientist with CSS, modified the existing technology originally designed to detect chemical and radiological contamination to be used for detecting oil in water. Under another contract, CSS analytical chemists, operating mobile high-throughput analytical laboratories in support of EPA’s Office of Emergency Management, are working to develop and implement new analytical procedures for detecting oil dispersant chemicals in seawater.

Data Management Remote Sensing and Environmental Sampling

For NOAA, CSS personnel are working across the Gulf area on-board ships with mobile labs to collect and analyze subsurface oil and water chemistry samples in the deeper waters of the Gulf. The CSS personnel collect and analyze raw data from environmental samples and remote sensing (satellite) to create maps to better predict and respond to any threats that subsurface oil could pose to Gulf communities, fishing grounds, and ecosystems. For EPA, CSS also uploads the data collected from the ASPECT flights onto the Google Earth product, where it can be accessed by the public.

Shoreline Assessment

CSS personnel have undergone Shoreline Cleanup Assessment Teams (SCAT) training, and are trained in Emergency Response and hazardous waste operations. The SCAT assess and characterize affected beachfronts in terms of topography, beach type and surroundings. They record in detail where and what type of oil is present to help document the temporal and spatial changes in oil distribution and to develop cleanup recommendations that will have minimal impact to the environment. Each SCAT is comprised of a Federal representative, a State representative or responsible party and a field scientist. The CSS SCAT-trained field scientists are currently awaiting deployment.

“We take pride in our ability to mobilize qualified people and get them trained and deployed in situations such as this,” says Doug Britt, President and COO of CSS, “Our entire corporate management team is trained in the Nation’s Incident Command System and our strong science core and flexibility helps us get the right people to the right places as fast as possible.”

Captain John Cardarelli II, US Public Health Service and EPA Work Assignment Manager, stated CSS’s “willingness to get involved and pick up tasks outside their normal duties has helped the ASPECT Program and the Agency adjust to the many demands of the response. We continue to be impressed with their support to the Program and the National Decontamination Team.”

About CSS

Consolidated Safety Services (CSS) and the Dynamac Corporation (Dynamac), two award-winning companies with long and interrelated histories, were formally united with the acquisition of Dynamac by CSS earlier this year. The combined resources and capabilities of CSS offer its customers extraordinary expertise in science programs support, environmental health & safety, environmental compliance & management, transportation safety & security, and emergency response & disaster recovery. CSS applies science and technology to create a healthier, safer and environmentally sustainable future. For more information about CSS services and solutions, call 703.691.4612 or visit the CSS web site at