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10-14 February 2020
Europe/Vienna timezone

Integrated Response Training Focused On Soft Targets Housing Radiological Sources-A Flexable Approach

Not scheduled
Paper CC: Capacity building (e.g. human resource development and sustainability, nuclear security education and job-specific performance training including for newcomer countries)


Mr Daniel Romano (US DOE)


It is a widely accepted premise that terrorists seek to acquire radioactive materials with the objective of causing both harm and disruption on a major scale. The United States Depart of Energy’s Office of Radiological Security (ORS) has taken a multi-tiered approach to securing soft targets (e.g., universities and hospitals), which house radioactive materials for research and medical use. The first prong was that various security upgrades were provided by ORS to these (soft) sites in order to increase the security posture surrounding these materials. Though an important step, ORS recognized that detection and delay measures at a site are meaningless if there is not a timely and effective response from the local law enforcement agency.

Thus the second tier was introduced by ORS in the form of the Response Training Academy located at the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee which provides multiple training resources to engage sites coupled with their local law enforcement so that the law enforcement is aware and prepared to respond to a site’s criminal/terrorist event involving radioactive materials.

Alarm Response Training (ART) is the primary training program provided by the ORS and is specifically tailored to the responsible on-site and their local responders who support the protection of sites that have radiological and nuclear (R/N) materials. This training program directly supports the ORS protection strategy through the promotion of a timely, well prepared, and coordinated response that has the capability to prevent the theft of nuclear and radiological materials. The ART course combines classroom instruction, tabletop exercises, and hands-on training for on-site security, law enforcement, radiation safety officers, safety personnel, and other responders.

ART has proven to be an extremely effective program when presented in a domestic environment. Each soft site is supported by a local jurisdictional police department. Though there are over ten thousand police departments in the United States, each one is task organized in a similar fashion with comparable tactics, techniques and procedures. The “United States model of policing” has not proven to be the case with partner nations. Something other than a “one size fits all” approach to radiological source security needs to be examined.

Experience with numerous partner nations attending ART has shown that each partner nation has its own unique approach to response as their policing methodologies are varied as is the equipment carried by their local police (e.g. armed, unarmed). A common theme heard from our partner countries was that the ART training concepts (particularly the academic portion) were absolutely valid with respect to their individual countries, though their response protocols varies from the US model (as demonstrated during the . As response procedures are varied between partner countries, the ART training approach must also be flexible to the individual partner country’s needs.

ART course international approach regarding content flexibility begins with a needs assessment developed during discussions with the partner country. These discussions will outline partner country's response force procedures and protocols, along with laws specific to sites containing radiological sources located in the partner country.

In this manner, the development of a proven radiological response program that integrates all aspects of radiological response can be customized to each individual partner country’s needs. The partner countries ability to conduct a timely and effectively response by local law enforcement (and others) will be greatly enhanced in stopping a criminal or terrorist event involving radioactive materials.

The Office of Radiological Security provides tools to build and reinforce ties between sites and their local law enforcement agency so that responders are prepared to thwart the most determined of adversaries from obtaining radioactive materials. Alarm Response Training’s proven training methods along with its flexibility to adapt partner countries response protocols will be presented.

Gender Male
State United States

Primary author

Mr Daniel Romano (US DOE)

Presentation Materials