- ONTARIO, Calif. - Ontario
International Airport has installed a decontamination system to clean biological
and chemical toxins off 700 people per hour, becoming the first airport
in the nation to have the high-tech unit.
- The Los Angeles World Airport System, which owns and
operates Ontario International, bought three of the $220,000 Mass Casualty
Decon Systems. Two of them will be deployed at Los Angeles International
Airport by January, Michael DiGirolamo, airport system director in Los
Angeles, said Friday.
- If people have been contaminated, they must take off
their clothes and take a hot shower (80 degrees to 95 degrees) in a special
solution of water, bleach and chemical that would neutralize the toxic
agents they were exposed to, he said.
- Men and women would go through different compartments.
After the showers, they would have to wear paper suits until uncontaminated
clothing could be brought to them. Personal belongings would be decontaminated
separately, and some items may have to be destroyed, DiGirolamo said.
- While other city fire departments, such as San Francisco,
Seattle and Atlanta, have the decontamination system available to airports,
the Los Angeles World Airport System is the first airport system in the
world to have the units specifically for airport use only, he said.
- The system, made by Modec Inc. of Denver, is housed in
a trailer and pulled by a big-rig. It would be used in the event of an
industrial accident or terrorist threat, said Peter L. Drinkwater, Ontario
- The Australian army has a contract with Modec to provide
decontamination systems for the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games.
- Next year, Modec expects to begin selling a special foam
for anthrax developed by Sandia Laboratories in Albuquerque, N.M. The foam
could be used in the Modec systems.