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Course Description

PER-354 - Response to Radiological/Nuclear Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) Incidents

Course Overview:
This instructor led, drill-based course delivered at the Nevada National Security Site combines individual and team performance skills required in the response to a radiological/nuclear Weapon of Mass Destruction (WMD) incident. Course materials are presented over a three (3) day period utilizing various learning methods, to include classroom lecture, demonstrations, and hands-on drills. The course culminates in a multi-phased drill event where knowledge, skills, and procedures are applied. To accomplish the objectives of this course, the Participants will learn of the current terrorist threats related to radiological/nuclear WMDs, as well as the characteristics and hazards of Radiation Exposure Devices (REDs), Radiological Dispersal Devices (RDDs), and Improvised Nuclear Devices (INDs), and the related response considerations. Participants will also gain knowledge and skills pertaining to use of radiation detection devices required for the response and safety of the responder.

Training will further include establishing operational zones (both classroom instruction and drill application), Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) (PER 347), Responder and non-ambulatory decontamination, and use of the Radio-Isotope Identification Device (RIID) for hazard identification (PER 345).

Course Objectives: 
Upon completion of this training course, Participants will be able to:

  • Recognize a radiological/nuclear WMD incident and factors to consider when responding to this type of terrorist threat.
  • Describe the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) used at a radiological incident.
  • Given a radiological/nuclear WMD scenario, describe how to conduct radiological decontamination for the public.
  • Determine the critical need for, and requirement of, establishing zones during a radiological/nuclear WMD incident.
  • Explain the employment of the Radio-Isotope Identification Device (RIID) to locate and identify contained and uncontained radiological/nuclear materials.
  • Perform an area/facility detection operation.
  • Determine the effectiveness of the actions taken in accomplishing the planned response objectives and describe the steps required to terminate the emergency phase of the incident consistent with the Incident Action Plan (IAP).

It is the responsibility of the jurisdiction to select course Participants.


Certificates are issued to attendees upon successful completion of the course.


All training and course materials are provided at no cost to eligible Participants. Funding provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency/National Preparedness Directorate (FEMA/NPD) U.S. Department of Homeland Security.


Nevada National Security Site


Radioactive Sources: 
This course uses actual radioactive materials. It is designed and monitored so Participants receive only minor radiation doses (lower than a chest X-ray or typical roundtrip airline flight across the U.S.).


This course enhances the competencies defined in National Fire Prevention Association NFPA 472, “Standard for Competence of Responders to Hazardous Materials/WMD Incidents,” for responding to specific radiological/nuclear WMD incidents, and augments the responder’s knowledge and skills to perform those duties and functions.


Enrollment Information: 
In order to attend a training class delivered by one of the FEMA/NPD training partners, a request must be submitted to the designated U.S. Department of Homeland Security training point of contact. For the Training Coordinator in your area, please Click "HERE"

Prerequisites & Other Information:
AWR-140 or AWR-140-W, Introduction to Radiological/Nuclear Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) Operations 

Recommended Prerequisites:
It is recommended that Participants be Certified Hazardous Material Technicians.

No tuition is charged.

Course Specifics

Hours: 30.00
Provider: Counterterrorism Operations Support (CTOS)
Disciplines: Emergency Medical Service
Fire Service
Law Enforcement

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Available Classes

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