Argon Electronics has enabled the London Fire Brigade to significantly improve the quality of its CBRN response training by supplying the service with its state-of-the-art CBRN (chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear) simulation training technology.
The London Fire Brigade has been using Argon Simulators for almost ten years. Dave Topping, Watch Manager, Hazardous Materials and Environmental Protection Team, London Fire Brigade, explained why these tools are so important. “Electronic simulation tools are vital for us for a number of reasons. The most obvious is perhaps that we can’t simulate an incident by planting nerve agents around London as it would compromise safety and, in any case, insurance would be a non-starter. Travelling to a wide open space such as those locations in Canada that have been used for response training isn’t an option. So Argon Electronics simulators enable us to stage effective exercises that are challenging for the participants but don’t cause a threat to safety.”
The London Fire Brigade uses the Argon Electronics LCD 3.2e-SIM, a high fidelity simulator for the Smiths Detection LCD3.2e, as a simulated chemical warfare agent and toxic industrial substance detector. The Brigade also uses the RDS-200-SIM, an extremely realistic training simulator for the Mirion RDS200, which responds to safe ultrasound simulation Gamma sources. There’s also the EPD-MK2-SIM, a training simulator for the Thermo Scientific EPD-Mk2 dosimeter, which totally replicates the user interface of the real Thermo EPD-Mk2. The package enables the London Fire Brigade to stage extremely powerful radiological, CBRN and HazMat training exercises and scenarios, as Dave Topping explained.
“The sims offer great flexibility in planning exercises,” Dave said. “For example, we can prepare a scenario where the trainees don’t know what they are going to expect, which is extremely useful because in a real life situation the men and women responding to an alert do not always know exactly what they are looking for. For example, the LCD3.2e-SIM detects a wide range of agents by responding to electronic simulation sources that represent chemical vapours, toxic industrial substances or false positives.”
Training exercises using the LCD3.2e-SIM simulator can be set up swiftly and safely, with no need to use simulants that are harmful to the environment or the personnel involved. Because they pose no risk to health, the electronic simulation sources can be set anywhere, including within public buildings, in less than ten minutes.
“The equipment has proven to be very successful and it is easy for ourcrews to use.”