Recognise, Assess, React (RAR) for Chemical, Biological and Radiological (CBR) Incidents
The response actions taken before and during a CBR attack by security staff can significantly limit the effects and improve the outcome of an incident. Security control room (SCR) staff play an essential role in preparing for and responding to a CBR incident.
NPSA have released new detailed guidance for security personnel on preparing and responding to a CBR incident, which builds on the key information in this campaign. The guidance documents can be found on the Preparing and Responding to a Chemical, Biological or Radiological (CBR) Incident page.
NPSA have developed a new campaign - RAR for CBR incidents - which summarises the essential information required for SCR personnel to effectively respond to a CBR incident. It includes materials that can be printed out to embed this guidance within an organisation including:
- Four posters summarising the RAR for CBR incidents process and the associated activities to be performed at each stage. This may be printed and displayed in an SCR environment.
- A foldable leaflet summarising the RAR for CBR incidents process which may be kept on SCR personnel.
The RAR for CBR incidents campaign involves a three-stage process to support an effective response by SCR staff to a CBR incident. These can be summarised under the following headings: Recognise, Assess, React.
- Recognise - understanding the indicators of a CBR incident to be able to recognise them before attack initiation or as soon as possible during an attack. These include physical symptoms and other signs.
- Assess - undertaking a rapid incident assessment to ensure that the response strategy in place, for example evacuation, is appropriate and minimises further harm to people on the site.
- React - communicating and acting rapidly to reduce harm to yourself and others.
Security managers should ensure that SCR staff are familiar with this process to enable an effective response to a CBR incident.
The RAR for CBR incidents campaign includes the REMOVE advice for individuals who are exposed to a hazardous substance. For more information on the REMOVE advice please see REMOVE: guidance on hazardous substance exposure.
Additional information when applying RAR for CBR incidents
Where possible, the activities within the Assess stage should be carried out prior to the React stage, as the information gathered under Assess will inform the most appropriate response activities under React, with the least risk for additional harm to building/site occupants.
It may not be practically viable however during an incident to conduct a thorough scene assessment prior to initiating response actions. For example, where there are individuals in the direct vicinity of the CBR attack (or suspected attack) and there is a threat to life, priority should be given to immediately instructing these individuals to evacuate the area and to prevent further access.
The order of activities within the Assess and React stages should therefore be dynamically considered within the specific context of an ongoing CBR incident, as it is may be necessary to carry out stages and activities in parallel.
The process of recognising, assessing and reacting to an incident should be completed as many times as necessary as the incident changes, for example as a CBR substance spreads to a different part of a building/site.
Finally, it is essential you do not put yourself or others in danger when utilising RAR for CBR incidents.