Rapid identification of hazardous agents and contaminants

Endorsed by

The ability to rapidly identify hazardous agents and contaminants

Potential Solutions
Following solutions could be addressing this gap.

The focus of this is on the initial detection and identification of hazardous agents and contaminants on the incident scene and the delivery of pertinent information about those threats to responders and commanders. Responders face a large number of diverse hazards and threats, including chemical and biological agents, radioactive particles, deficient oxygen levels, and explosive compounds.3 However, they may have little or no awareness of these hazards upon arrival at the scene. This lack of awareness can place responders at significant , as even minimum exposure can have significant health impacts.

Responders currently use a combination of personal detectors, vehicle-mounted sensors and other stand-off systems to detect chemical, explosive and radiological hazards on scene. Existing equipment detects a limited number of common compounds or hazardous agents that impact standard daily operations. However, none of this equipment provides awareness of the range of agents on scene. Nor are they able to rapidly identify and characterize these agents. Further, many current detection systems are vehicle-mounted or deployed in a stationary location, providing limited awareness for dismounted responders. Lastly, there is limited ability to detect biological agents in real time.

Responders specific information about the threats and hazards when they arrive on scene and throughout the duration of their operations. Responders and commanders to be alerted upon detection of hazards and as concentration levels approach established health safety exposure thresholds. Further, pertinent information, including protective action guidance, must be conveyed so that responders can better protect themselves, victims, and the population.

This third is distinct from the second gap, – “the ability to detect, monitor, and analyze passive and active threats and hazards at incident scenes in real time” – which focuses on the continuing monitoring and analysis of a wider array of threats, along with the integration and visualization of threat data. Data measurements derived from solutions to address the gap described in this document may be integrated into solutions for the second gap. However, this SOO focuses on the rapid detection, identification and characterization of specific chemical, and biological and radiological hazards.

Rationale & related CM function(s)

eu Portfolio of Solutions web site has been initially developed in the scope of DRIVER+ project. Today, the service is managed by AIT Austrian Institute of Technology GmbH., for the benefit of the European Management. PoS is endorsed and supported by the Disaster Competence Network Austria (DCNA) as well as by the STAMINA and TeamAware H2020 projects.