Chemical and biological terrorist attacks in indoor spaces pose specific challenges for prevention and preparedness, two attributes of the highest importance especially when critical infrastructures are involved. This is the report of the first task of the Thematic Group (Detection of Indoor Airborne Chemical and Biological Agents) on indoor CB risks to critical infrastructures. In this task we identified the types of infrastructures that seem to be the most vulnerable to indoor-type attacks with chemical or biological agents, we reviewed previous experiences (both in terms of case studies and in terms of past research projects) and identified the most pertinent CB agents. Once these were determined, generic (representative) scenarios of indoor airborne contamination have been listed in order to launch the following step of the project.
So far we have completed the first phase of scenario identification and selection. Preliminary analyses of the scenarios has taken place already. The next step includes the detailed analysis of the selected scenarios in order to reckon the damage potential and health risk potency of the agents involved. Our preliminary conclusion is that a lot can be gained by re-analysis of prior experiences and fictitious scenarios involving CB agent attacks. Nonetheless, it became clear through our analytical process that proper examination of scenarios involving release of CB agents in the interior of critical infrastructures requires a re-adaptation of existing modelling tools and re-analysis of incidents that occurred in the past. This relates to the specific features of indoor spaces and the extremely high population exposure potential of indoor spaces given the current organisation of society.
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