The recent delivery of the International Radiological and Nuclear Training for Emergency Response (I-RAD) course, held in Slovenia, provided an opportunity for the training audience to work within a civilian-military cooperative in responding to radiological emergencies. This course was taught through a collaboration between the JCBRN Defence COE and the US Department of Energy (DOE), bringing together participants from diverse backgrounds to enhance their knowledge and skills in radiological emergency preparedness and response.
The I-RAD course stood out for its hands-on approach, combining classroom instruction, equipment demonstrations, and field exercises. Participants from the Slovenian Army, Police, Fire Department, and other relevant agencies benefited from the expertise of receiving professional instruction. The practical exercises involved the use of the Spectral Advanced Radiological Computer System, also known as SPARCS, used to conduct radiological search missions in response to a potential radiological incident. These exercises greatly benefited from the use of real radiological sources.
This course not only improved each participant’s capabilities but also fostered greater civil-military cooperation. By working together, sharing best practices, and learning from each other's experiences, the participants can now better address the complex challenges of radiological emergencies. Positive feedback highlighted the course’s value and relevance in preparing each participant for their current and future roles.
The I-RAD course in Slovenia exemplified the importance of continuous professional development and cooperation in building a resilient and prepared force. It demonstrated the commitment of NATO, the US DOE, the JCBRN Defence COE, and the Slovenian Armed Forces to enhancing our collective response capabilities. By leveraging the expertise and resources of different stakeholders, we can effectively respond to radiological incidents, ensuring the safety and security of our nations.
The I-RAD course serves as a testament to the power of collaboration, practical training, and knowledge sharing. It is through such initiatives that we can strengthen our civilian-military partnerships and bolster our preparedness to face the challenges of radiological emergencies together.
For additional information on courses organized by the JCBRN Defence COE, please visit our Training Portal (https://www.jcbrncoe.org/index.php/courses-link-page).
Authors and photo: MAJ František PAVLÁSEK (CZE-A)