The Elizabeth, Jersey City, Newark, and North Hudson Regional fire departments and the Union County Police joined the Port Authority's New Jersey Marine Terminals staff at Port Newark on April 21, for a fullscale drill designed to test a high-capacity firefighting method, called the Neptune System, adaptable for water and foam. The various departments' boats drafted from Berth 7 in the Newark Channel, and boosted pressure with a pumper engine to generate a steady stream of 7,500 gallons of water per minute.
The drill was observed by the state Division of Fire Service and the U.S. Coast Guard's Sector New York Incident Management Team.
"The Neptune System was purchased by the state in 2006 to give local departments the ability to deliver a large stream to a tank farm, warehouse, or marine fire," said NJMT Manager Andrew Saporito. "The drill replicated a large multi-agency, full-scale, waterside response to test the firefighters' operational effectiveness, communication, and coordination with us and local law enforcement. And it went very well." He added that this was the second year that the Elizabeth Fire Department used the drill at Port Newark as an opportunity to train recruit classes in marine response, logistics, and security awareness.