Depth of Experience Critical to Operations Training



A toxic entry supervisor looks through piping during specialized training at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant.



Carl Reagan, toxic entry supervisor, watches as a toxic area entry trainee performs a task. Training tasks are designed to familiarize workers with wearing protective suits while performing their duties in areas of the Blue Grass Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant that will be contaminated during operations.

A toxic entry supervisor with 25 years of experience assisted with training and procedures that led to the Blue Grass plant’s first Toxic Area Training in November.

“I like the fact that I can put people at ease during potentially dangerous situations and bring them out safe and clean,” said Carl Reagan. “I am fortunate to be part of a team of supervisors with experience from the other chemical demilitarization sites, as well. Our level of expertise and diverse knowledge has been helpful in getting the training going.”

Reagan and his team work with maintenance and support personnel to train them to be comfortable and familiar with the equipment, protective gear and procedures for toxic area entries before operations begin.

Reagan said his experience with toxic area entries, where suited personnel access contaminated areas of the plant for maintenance or other duties, is long. He quickly found his niche early in his career as a supervisor of the Demilitarization Protective Ensemble Support Area and the Toxic Maintenance Area.

“He made me feel very comfortable about getting into the suit,” said Roemetta Gelhaus, Instrumentation and Controls technician, Bechtel Parsons Blue Grass. “Knowing he and the other supervisors have such a depth of experience made my first-time training easier for me.”

“With 15 years doing chemical and nuclear work in the Army, then almost 25 years in this field, I’ve been called a forefather of the chemical demilitarization program,” Reagan said. “I started on the Johnston Atoll Chemical Agent Destruction System and was there about 10 years. I spent 10 years at the Pine Bluff Chemical Agent Destruction Facility and three at the Pueblo Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant, before moving here. I enjoy being in a position where I can apply lessons learned from each of these sites.”

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