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2008 MAY–JUNE No. 362
May 23, 2008 [posted]

The Emergency Response Guidebook (ERG2008)

[Editor's Note: This is a reprint of an announcement published on NLM-Tox-Enviro-Health-L, an e-mail announcement list available from the NLM Division of Specialized Information Services. To subscribe to this list, please see the NLM-TOX-ENVIRO-HEALTH-L Join, Leave, or Change Options page.]

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The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Emergency Response Guidebook 2008 (ERG2008) provides guidance to first responders on how to identify the types of hazardous materials that may be involved in an incident and how to respond to the threats those materials might pose to emergency crews and the public. This updated hazmat safety guide for police, fire and other emergency response organizations is designed to aid emergency response personnel who may be the first to arrive at the scene of a transportation incident involving hazardous materials. The NLM® Wireless Information System for Emergency Responders (WISER®) has included the Emergency Response Guidebook (ERG) since 2000, and currently includes an ERG2008 Tool, comprised of the complete ERG with powerful search capabilities.

NLM has worked with DOT Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration to grant emergency responders electronic access to the ERG2008 through laptops and personal digital assistants (PDAs). This joint effort keeps pace with the advance of portable personal technology and fulfills the request of a number of emergency responders for an electronic-based ERG. DOT is also distributing nearly 1.75 million print copies of the ERG.

For more information on the ERG2008, or to download the ERG and WISER software application, visit, or call (202) 366-4900. Print copies of the ERG are available commercially through the U.S. Government Printing Office Bookstore and other commercial vendors.

For information on WISER software, visit

The Emergency Response Guidebook (ERG2008). NLM Tech Bull. 2008 May-Jun; (362):e9.