Thursday, August 31, 2017

Richard Tetrev meets with Public Safety Advisory Council: Wiscasset Municipal Airport (KIWI), Lincoln County, Maine

Richard Tetrev, new supervisor of the Wiscasset Municipal Airport.

Richard Tetrev will be Wiscasset Municipal Airport’s interim airport manager the rest of the season, following Frank Costa’s resignation effective Sept. 5, Wiscasset Administrative Assistant Kathy Onorato said Wednesday.

Tetrev, who has served as airport supervisor since 2015, appeared before the Public Safety Advisory Council on Aug. 29. Tetrev oversaw Brunswick Naval Air Station prior to its closure.

Since BNAS stopped being a federal facility, the airport no longer maintains crash trucks – fire engines that spread a foam fire retardant called AFFF. Instead, the town of Brunswick has dual use fire trucks that can be used to spread AFFF. The Wiscasset airport had relied on the BNAS crash trucks in case of a crash or aircraft fire, but now the airport is left without this critical safety measure, Tetrev said. That will make getting grants to improve the airport more difficult, he said.

When BNAS stopped using its crash trucks, there was some AFFF left over, but no one can figure out what happened to it, he said. The best guess is that it is in the possession of the Maine Forest Service for putting out wildfires. Both the Wiscasset Ambulance Service and the airport are in touch with the agency. If Wiscasset can get some, it could be applied with five-gallon buckets until a vehicle can be obtained and firefighters trained on how to use it.

The plan for the immediate future is to create a staging area at the airport in case of a natural disaster or mass casualty event, Police Chief Jeff Lange said.  Tetrev wants to do a drill at the airport within the next year, with a simulated plane crash, tabletop exercises, and other drills in case of a crash in the future as the airport begins accepting larger planes, especially jets. 

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