CBRN / HazMat Training Blog

The growing role of simulator technology in training for CBRNe threats

Written by Steven Pike on 11 Jan 2019

In the UK, it is not unusual for first responders to be in possession of very little (or, in some cases, nothing) in the way of detection, identification or monitoring (DIM) equipment in the course of carrying out their daily duties.

In the event of a major incident however (such as a terrorist attack, major fire, flood or a collapsed building) they may be called upon to support the activities of a specialist Hazardous Area Response Team (HART).


How simulators aid emergency response radiation safety training

Written by Steven Pike on 18 Dec 2018

In an ideal world, an emergency response team would know exactly what kind of radiological hazard they were attending before they arrived on the scene of an incident. This might be via a resource such as a central database that lists the addresses of properties that are known to contain specific sources of ionising radiation.

In other cases, such as a road traffic accident for example, that risk might not become apparent until responders reach the incident and are confronted with a clear visual warning in the form of a trefoil.


Coming events: what's new in HazMat & CBRNe for 2019

Written by Steven Pike on 13 Dec 2018

Exhibitions, trade-shows and conferences can provide an invaluable opportunity for HazMat and CBRNe practitioners to view, try and compare the very latest developments in chemical warfare, equipment, machinery, tools and technologies.

In this blog post we highlight seven internationally recognized HazMat and CBRNe events that will be taking place around the world in 2019.


How inter-agency collaboration can enhance HazMat safety training

Written by Steven Pike on 13 Dec 2018

As HazMat incidents become ever more challenging, complex and unpredictable, there is a growing reliance on the knowledge and expertise of highly-skilled teams across a variety of agencies.

A more recent case in point was the operational response to the Novichok nerve agent poisonings in Salisbury in the UK in 2018. This event, which garnered enormous international attention, brought together the skills of police, fire crews, paramedics, the military and specialist HazMat teams over the course of the incident - from initial response to containment, decontamination and the ensuing investigation. 


Getting hands-on with nuclear emergency response training

Written by Steven Pike on 05 Dec 2018

Large-scale releases of ionizing radiation are thankfully a rare occurrence. But with just over sixty commercially run nuclear power plants currently in service in the US, and fifteen operational nuclear reactors located across seven plants in the UK, the risk of an accidental release, however minor, is one that must be meticulously trained for.


What is the best HazMat training method to keep first responders safe

Written by Steven Pike on 26 Nov 2018

While regulations exist to guide HazMat training requirements for first responders, the reality is that many personnel still don't consider themselves to be adequately skilled in the use of their equipment.

Sometimes it's because there simply isn't enough time to carry out regular and structured training programmes. Sometimes this lack of preparedness comes as the result of budget cuts where training is one of the first things to go.


How computer game tech can bring a CBRN tabletop exercise to life

Written by Steven Pike on 23 Nov 2018

A tabletop exercise can offer an easy-to-execute and cost-effective means of simulating an emergency CBRN or HazMat situation in order to test operational response, to exercise your command structure and to improve the functionality of your team.

The less formal and low-stress nature of the training environment however, means there is also the risk of delivering a far from authentic learning experience.


What are the options for obtaining CBRN simulator detector equipment?

Written by Steven Pike on 15 Nov 2018

Radiation training has always been an inherently challenging exercise for first responders. After all, how do you ensure that your crews recognize and understand the very real dangers of this silent and invisible threat?

Thankfully exposure to dangerous levels of ionizing radiation is not something that most first response teams are likely to encounter that frequently. But having the right training - and having access to the resources and equipment to be able to train as often as necessary - is absolutely essential.


Chemical hazard training - comparing the LCD3.3 and the LCD3.3-SIM

Written by Steven Pike on 08 Nov 2018

The ability to deliver consistent, engaging and true-to-life chemical hazard detection training scenarios relies on regular access to realistic, hands-on equipment.

What's vital is that these training tools replicate not only the readings and the responsiveness of real detectors, but that they also provide trainees with an authentic experience that recreates the potential challenges that they will face in actual incidents.


Understanding the HazMat risk of industrial chemical incidents

Written by Steven Pike on 24 Oct 2018

Chemical manufacturing facilities are full of potential hazards which, if mishandled, can present a very real risk both to the safety of workers and to the wider communities in which those factories are located.

Even when the most stringent of precautions are taken, accidents can occur - whether due to human error, insufficient training, a natural disaster or an incident that results from a malicious act.

Depending on the nature of the event, HazMat response teams will be required to work with police, paramedics or environmental health agencies to identify the threat, reduce harm and resolve the situation.