Bringing the personal touch to pipeline safety
Enbridge's Emergency Response Ambassador program builds relationships with emergency responders
The scene of an incident is no place to start handing out business cards.
This is the message we share with employees who are being trained to participate in Enbridge’s Emergency Response Ambassador program. Our ambassadors are part of a broader Emergency Responder Education Program (EREP) that Enbridge launched two years ago, in an effort to better communicate with local first responders as part of our U.S. Public Awareness Program.
We asked emergency responders across the U.S. – fire chiefs, paramedics, county sheriffs, police officers – how they wanted to receive emergency response and pipeline safety information. Generally speaking, they told us that a combination of written materials and in-person meetings helped them feel better prepared to respond safely, and effectively, to a pipeline incident.
Using this feedback, Enbridge launched the Emergency Response Ambassador program in 2013 as a way to build meaningful and lasting relationships with emergency responders near our pipelines and facilities. Since 2013, more than 80 employee ambassadors across the U.S. have been trained to conduct in-person outreach with emergency responders, using a variety of methods – including emergency response presentations, facility tours and tabletop exercises.
The goal of the program is to meet with representatives of the fire departments and 9-1-1 call centers most likely to respond to an incident on the Enbridge system at least once every two years. The program also provides much-needed consistency in the 17 states where Enbridge operates.
During their meetings with emergency responders, our employee ambassadors provide information that’s critical to a safe and effective response. This includes:
- Information about products being transported, and their associated hazards;
- Pipeline size and operating pressure;
- Pipeline maps for the region in question;
- And other resources that Enbridge has developed for local responders, such as the Safe Community program.
Ambassadors also help promote Enbridge’s free, state-of-the-art online training program available at mypipelinetraining.com
Our employees volunteer to participate in the program – often conducting meetings with emergency responders outside of office hours and on weekends. Through the first two years of the program, they conducted more than 250 meetings with emergency responders.
Ambassadors have a unique ability to connect with emergency responders, since many of them live in the communities where Enbridge operates. Numerous ambassadors serve as members of their local volunteer fire department – and many have a decade or more of experience in the pipeline industry, further enhancing their credibility as a source of information.
The success of our Emergency Response Ambassador program is an important step forward in our continued commitment to safety and operational reliability.
Enbridge’s ambassadors will continue to receive training and tools on conducting effective outreach with responders of all types, including emergency managers. And as we continue to support North America’s energy transformation by building out much-needed pipeline infrastructure, our Emergency Response Ambassador program will grow, too – as new employee ambassadors are trained throughout the U.S.