WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) last week conducted an International Radiological Assistance Program Training for Emergency Response (I-RAPTER) training and a Medical Management of Radiation Injuries (I-MED) training in Yerevan, Armenia. The training was sponsored by the Armenian Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources and was hosted by the State University for Engineering Armenia (SUEA).
The training was opened by NNSA Associate Administrator for Emergency Operations Joseph Krol, Armenian Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources Vice Minister Areg Galstyan and the State University for Engineering Armenia (SUEA) Rector Ara Avetisyan.
“NNSA is happy to be able to provide training to Armenia and to help ensure that its emergency responders are able to appropriately respond to incidents and accidents involving nuclear and radioactive material,” said Krol. “The I-RAPTER course provides emergency responders with techniques and tools to locate, characterize, identify and control nuclear and radioactive material, and the I-MED course provides participants with practical information on how to treat injured contaminated patients following a radiation incident.”
The I-RAPTER course had 28 participants from the Armenian Ministries of Energy and Natural Resources, Emergency Situations, Defense, Nature Protection, and Territorial Protection as well as representatives from Civil Protection, Police, the State Nuclear Safety Regulatory Committee, SEUA and the Armenian Nuclear Power Plant. The I-MED course had 16 participants from the Ministry of Healthcare, the Ministry of Education and Science, the State Revenue Committee, the State Medical University and SEUA.
The I-RAPTER training was conducted by personnel from NNSA’s Office of Emergency Operation, NSTec’s Remote Sensing Laboratory at Joint Base Andrews and Sandia National Laboratories. The I-MED training was conducted by personnel from NNSA’s Office of Emergency Operation and the Radiation Emergency Assistance Center/Training Site (REAC/TS) in Oak Ridge, Tenn.
The I-RAPTER course included extensive hands-on use of radiation detection equipment along with search, characterization, identification and control scenarios involving radiation sources. The I-MED course included information on case studies, dosimetry, acute radiation syndrome, treatment for internal contamination, management of infectious diseases and pathophysiology of radiation exposure.
Established by Congress in 2000, NNSA is a semi-autonomous agency within the U.S. Department of Energy responsible for enhancing national security through the military application of nuclear science. NNSA maintains and enhances the safety, security, reliability and performance of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile without nuclear testing; works to reduce global danger from weapons of mass destruction; provides the U.S. Navy with safe and effective nuclear propulsion; and responds to nuclear and radiological emergencies in the U.S. and abroad.