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Opening of the New NNSA Alarm Response Training Academy

On Thursday, October 23rd, the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) celebrated the opening of the new NNSA Alarm Response Training Academy at the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oakridge Tennessee, and Penn’ Division of Public Safety (DPS) and Office of Environmental Health and Radiation Safety (EHRS) were at the forefront of this celebration. The program trains local law enforcement and other critical first responders around the country, and internationally.

The DPS and EHRS, along with members of the Philadelphia Police Department, were invited to attend the inaugural NNSA Alarm Response Training program back in January 2009 and were invited back to attend this 5 year milestone of the program. In 2009, the contingent from Penn and Philadelphia provided feedback that was integral in shaping the direction of the program for future classes. Since January 2009, Y-12 has trained more than 3,400 personnel, from 44 states and 18 countries. The program features a three-day course. Participants in the program develop and discuss tactics, techniques, procedures and protocols for responding to a theft or sabotage events involving highly radioactive materials. After two days of classroom instruction, Y-12 experts facilitate live-action scenarios allowing participants to test their knowledge.

Prior to the grand opening celebration of the new NNSA Alarm Response Training Academy, the academy was formally dedicated to the memory of Penn’s former Radiation Safety Officer, Robert Forrest, for all that he personally contributed to this program. Rob died tragically, and much too soon, in the summer of 2012. A plaque dedicated to Rob’s memory will be permanently affixed to the site to attest to Rob’s and Penn’s contributions to the program. ART-Training-Pic-2