Austria this week is hosting a U.S.-sponsored course on responding to a radiological terrorist attack. Two dozen individuals from 15 nations are slated to participate, according to a National Nuclear Security Administration release (see GSN, April 19, 2007).
The NNSA Emergency Operations Office training course was organized with support from the International Atomic Energy Agency and the Austrian government. The course was held at the Federal Security Academy - Civil Protection School, where participants were given a chance to work on operationally useful skills.
The radiological emergency response course includes physical training in the operation of sensor equipment during an exercise centered on detecting radioactive materials. The intent is to prepare emergency personnel to deal with a real-life situation involving radiation.
"There is great international demand for this training course due to increased awareness for the need to protect large public gatherings from radiological terrorism," NNSA Associate Administrator Joseph Krol said in provided comments. "The venue in Austria offers NNSA the opportunity to educate and reach out to numerous countries in one week. The training also expands on NNSA’s continued commitment to provide training to the international community" (U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration release
, June 7).