THE DEVELOPMENT AND USE OF CBRN SCENARIOS FOR EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS ANALYSES

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1 THE DEVELOPMENT AND USE OF CBRN SCENARIOS FOR EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS ANALYSES Hege Schultz Heireng 1, Monica Endregard 1, Hanne Breivik 1, Håkan Eriksson 2, Pierre-Alain Fonteyne 3, Dominic Kelly 4 and Therese Sandrup 1 1 Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (FFI), P. O. Box 25, NO-2027 Kjeller, Norway, 2 Swedish Defence Research Agency (FOI), SE Umeå, Sweden, 3 Université catholique de Louvain (UCL), B-1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium, 4 CBRNE Ltd, Ashford, Kent, TN30 6SY, UK INTRODUCTION The objective of Work Package 2 of the EU FP7 project PRACTICE (Preparedness and Resilience Against CBRN Terrorism using Integrated Concepts and Equipment) was to create a set of publicly available CBRN scenarios.[1] According to the definition used in this project, chemical (C), biological (B), radiological (R) or nuclear (N) incidents encompass all events in which exposure to C, B, or R threat compounds cause great harm to the health of people or animals (injuries, illness or death) and/or the environment, as well as incidents in which N materials undergoing fission cause harm through dispersed radioactive fission products or by direct irradiation. Such CBRN crises may be caused by intentional acts or by accidents. Both types of incidents are covered. An important objective for the reference set of scenarios is their adaptation and use by the European countries for CBRN emergency preparedness planning, education, training, and exercises. FFI has investigated the current status of the Norwegian C, R and N emergency preparedness in the Oslo and Bergen regions in Norway using some of the PRACTICE scenarios. CBRN SCENARIOS The reference set of CBRN scenarios must be unclassified. Otherwise, they cannot be used for demonstrations, open discussions and be included in the training kits and manuals for first responders, emergency services and the general public. In addition, the following overall criteria apply: The set covers a wide variety of emergency response challenges for C, B, R and N incidents, respectively. The scenarios are inspired by or directly based on accidents (bad practice or failure), natural outbreaks or CBRN terrorism events that have occurred, or based on scenarios that already have been made publicly available through other projects. The scenario descriptions are generic in order to be adaptable to a wide range of applications.

2 The selection of scenarios are not based on threat assessments, thus probabilities, actor capabilities, ease of production and availability of specific threat compounds have not been used as criteria. As a basis for developing the PRACTICE CBRN scenarios, the project made an overview of some available CBRN scenarios developed in previous projects, actual cases of CBRN terrorism and natural outbreaks, chemical, radiological and nuclear accidents. [2] Inspired by previous work, the project developed a template for scenario descriptions. The eleven PRACTICE CBRN scenarios [3] are: Scenario C1 Scenario C2 Scenario C3 Scenario C4 Scenario B1 Scenario B2 Scenario B3 Scenario R1 Scenario R2 Scenario N1 Scenario H1 Chemical attack inside building Sarin dispersal through ventilation system Chemical attack in city centre Explosion and dispersion of sulphur mustard Chemical transport accident Train derailment causing chlorine dispersal Chemical facility accident Toxic waste release to river system Biological attack at airport Influenza virus release in airplane Biological attack in buildings Anthrax letters Biological attack on food supply Bacterial contamination Radiological dispersal in city Radioactive caesium spread in fire Radiological attack on public transportation Hidden radioactive source Nuclear power plant accident Release of fission products Hoax Unknown powder in congress centre The scenario descriptions include a story outline, the cause, information on the threat compound and its properties, medical symptoms, release mechanisms and dissemination, a generic description of the location, possible consequences including a timeline, as well as key challenges for first responders, health services, other authorities and the media. The intention is that these scenarios can be adapted and specified in more detail to fit specific needs. For instance, for use in emergency preparedness planning and exercises, the scenarios form a basis for the more detailed storyline development and exercise injects. To do this, local specific background information is needed. Based on who the players are, information is required on the resources available, the emergency response actors and their responsibilities, organization and equipment. EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS ANALYSES A selection of the scenarios was used as a basis to analyse the Norwegian C, R and N emergency preparedness and crisis management in the Oslo and Bergen regions. Two scenario workshops were arranged for first responders and local, regional and national authorities to discuss in detail how the hypothetical scenarios would have been dealt with. For this purpose a representative set of the scenarios were adapted to the local conditions and further detailed. The role of the first responders in the initial phase is often decisive for the consequences and outcome of an incident. Carrying out an effective first response can at best reduce the number of lives lost, limit the health consequences, and save property and the environment. The current

3 analysis focuses on preparedness and crisis management for incidents with immediate consequences and symptoms quickly visible, which need to be handled by first responders at the scene. Even though serious complications can occur in the B-scenarios described previously, visible symptoms and illness occur at a later stage; thus are not handled by first responders and associated with a defined hazard scene. These types of scenarios involving delayed consequences were not analysed in the present work. The following C-, R- and N-scenarios formed the basis for discussions of Norwegian emergency preparedness during the two-day seminars in the Oslo and Bergen regions, respectively: Scenario 1: Chemical attack in city centre Explosion and dispersion of sulphur mustard Scenario 2: Chemical transport accident Train derailment causing chlorine dispersal Scenario 3: Radiological dispersal in city Radioactive caesium spread in fire Scenario 4: Radiological attack on public transportation Hidden radioactive source Scenario 5: Nuclear power plant accident Release of fission products Scenario 6: Nuclear submarine accident On board fires Scenario 7: Hoax Unknown powder in congress centre The nuclear submarine accident scenario was not developed in the PRACTICE-project, but prepared by FFI for the workshop in Bergen. Nuclear submarines occasionally visit the naval base here, and this is one of few nuclear scenarios possible in this region. More than 60 people attended the workshops in Oslo and Bergen in total. Representatives from key emergency services attended, i.e. the Police, the Fire and Rescue Services and the Health Services. National authorities were represented by the Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority, Norwegian Police Directorate, Norwegian Institute for Public Health, the Norwegian Directorate for Civil Protection and Emergency Planning, Norwegian Civil Defence, Norwegian Food Safety Authority, Norwegian Costal Administration, Norwegian Defence CBRN School, the National Competence Centre for NBC Medicine at the Oslo University Hospital, among others. The overall aim of the workshops was to identify the roles and responsibilities of the emergency services in responding to a CBRN incident, by looking at capabilities (equipment, procedures, training), inter-agency cooperation and coordination in a crisis, as well as crisis communication (to the public, between and within each agency). The participants discussed significant challenges in the Norwegian CBRN emergency preparedness, and suggested possible improvements in current behavior and priorities, to strengthen the overall preparedness and crisis management. RESULTS FROM THE WORKSHOPS The CBRN expertise in Norway is limited and dependent on a small number of individuals. Not all emergency agencies are aware of the regional and national organizations possessing CBRN-

4 expertise, and the experts in these organizations are not necessarily available 24/7. Despite this, as the terrorist attacks in Norway on 22 July 2011 illustrated, relevant experts will contribute, if asked, when an extraordinary event occurs, despite the lack of formal 24 hour emergency service. First responders carry out training and exercises very often, but preparedness for CBRN-incidents are seldom a priority in these exercises. Training within each agency is carried out frequently; however, inter-agency cooperation and coordination are not subject to exercises that often. It is our assumption that the relevant agencies will have difficulty in collaborating during a CBRN crisis situation if they have not clarified roles and responsibilities in advance. Norway is characterized by having a fragmented emergency response organization. A positive aspect of this is a response situation where many agencies will contribute and several regions have their experts that possess knowledge and skills within the field. The challenges arise when agencies with fundamental expertise within a field is not well enough known. We have unfortunately seen some examples of this. For instance, the National Competence Centre for NBC Medicine at the Oslo University Hospital has key expertise on medical treatment of CBRNcasualties. They can provide first responders, national authorities and others with professional assistance and advice before and during a CBRN-incident. This centre is well known in some parts of the country, in particular in the Oslo region, but as a national centre they should be wellknown to all relevant emergency agencies. The workshop participants emphasized the importance of having simple routines and procedures in handling a CBRN-crisis, preferably not deviating more from the standard procedures than necessary. CBRN incidents happen very seldom, making it preferable to have a standardized list of actions easily accessible for the Police, fire fighters and health personnel. This list should be developed in advance of a crisis, and in cooperation between the emergency services. It will ensure a standardized and planned response, in an early phase of the crisis where the time factor is of great significance. The R- and N-scenarios that were discussed during the workshop shed light on various challenges stemming from the release of radioactive material. All scenario discussions touched upon the emergency services ability to detect and identify radioactive material. In particular, the scenario involving a radiological attack on public transportation generated valuable discussions regarding source owners ability to protect and secure radioactive sources. All scenario discussions also referred to the importance of responding quickly to the public s need for verified information. Inadequate information provision can create panic in the public, as the general population lack knowledge on how to behave if a CBRN incident occurs. The Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority (NRPA) has a significant role in any scenarios involving releases of radioactive materials in Norway. NRPA participated on the first workshop,

5 but did not attend the second workshop. We observed that participants were more passive and uncertain about how to handle the situation of radiological release when the NRPA was absent. As described above, the competence in the public regarding CBRN is insufficient, but the emergency services as well as local, regional and national authorities should indeed also learn to prioritize training and exercises on CBRN incidents, and increase their knowledge regarding the risks and effects. The scenario involving chemical attack in city centre generated active discussions on the need for inter-agency collaboration in a situation where the emergency services, in particular health personnel, must handle mass casualties and contaminated people, forcing them to prioritize between patients due to capacity challenges and inadequacies. The scenario is inspired by several terrorist bomb attacks in Europe, including the London suicide bombings in July 2005, the train bombings in Madrid in March 2004 and the bomb explosion in Oslo in July 2011, even though none of these attacks comprised dispersion of toxic chemicals. In scenarios where an explosion occurs, similar to the chemical attack in city centre scenario described previously, most people will self-evacuate or at least be aware of the danger. If radioactive material is released, however, there is a probability that people will continue their everyday activities and not be aware of the danger of contamination. Alert-routines must be effective and in place, making it possible to inform the general public of the radiological releases. Alert-routines were discussed in all the R-scenarios. A small town is assumed to face greater challenges if a CBRN crisis occurs, as compared to a larger city. The local authorities are often less experienced, their routines are less trained, and their access to CBRN equipment is limited. For that reason, the chemical transport accident scenario was included to reveal challenges to a local community when facing a chemical spill. This scenario was based on several rail car accidents involving chlorine spills or near accidents, including in Festus US in 2002, Macdona US in 2004, Graniteville US in 2005 and Kungsbacka, Sweden in Some participants, especially the Fire Brigade representatives, advocated for more national emergency preparedness coordination in Norway and enhanced standardization in procedures and equipment. Local authorities are in many situations responsible for deciding the distribution of resources between different sectors and objectives within the district, contributing to large variations in emergency preparedness throughout the country. Some regions are well trained and equipped to handle different crises scenarios, including CBRN-incidents, others experience that emergency preparedness has lower priority.

6 CONCLUSIONS The EU FP7 project PRACTICE has developed a set of publicly available CBRN scenarios for use within the PRACTICE project, as well as adaptation and use by European countries for CBRN emergency preparedness planning, education, training, and exercises. FFI has investigated the current status of the Norwegian C, R and N emergency preparedness in the Oslo and Bergen regions in Norway using some of the PRACTICE scenarios. This analysis can inspire organizations and others who want to make use of the reference set of CBRN scenarios. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS We thank PRACTICE Work Package 2 participants from the following institutions for their contributions: Netherlands Organisation for Applied Research (TNO), Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (FFI), EADS-Cassidian S.A.S, Swedish Defence Research Agency (FOI), Université catholique de Louvain (UCL), King s College London (KCL), University of Umeå, CBRNE Ltd, and The Polish Main School of Fire Service (SGSP). We also thank the workshop participants from the Norwegian first responders and regional and national emergency authorities at the workshops October 2011 at FFI, Kjeller and April 2012 at Haakonsvern, Bergen, respectively. The research leading to the results of PRACTICE has received funding from the European Community s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/ ) under Grant Agreement n REFERENCES 1. EU FP7 project PRACTICE website, 2. Endregard, M., Breivik, H., Heireng, H.S., Enger, E., Sandrup, T., Kelly, D. (2011), D2.1 Scenario template, existing CBRN scenarios and historical incidents, PRACTICE WP2 deliverable, Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (FFI), Norway, ISBN (printed), ISBN (electronic), 3. Endregard, M., Breivik, H., Heireng, H.S., Sandrup, T., Fonteyne, P-A., Eriksson, H, Kelly, D. (2012), D2.2 Reference set of CBRN scenarios, PRACTICE WP2 deliverable, Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (FFI), Norway, ISBN (printed), ISBN (electronic), 4. Heireng, H.S., Sandrup, T., Endregard, M., Breivik, H., Enger, E., Nasjonal beredskap mot kjemiske, radiologiske og nukleære hendelser, FFI-rapport 2013/, Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (2013), in Norwegian (in preparation).

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