NCT USA 2019
By: Ryan Perry, Consultant at IB Consultancy
The 5th edition of NCT USA took place from May 7th to the 9th at the Hilton Dulles Hotel in the Washington, D.C. area. IB Consultancy, the CBRNe Society and the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department’s HazMat Response Unit came together to welcome high-level government decision-makers from local, state and federal departments within the U.S. as well as from abroad. The 3rd edition of the NCT PRO Trainings were held in parallel to the conference for military and civil first responders, using the most novel technologies available, provided by our sponsors and exhibitors. Their products also received face-time throughout the three-day event in the exhibition hall and during the Expo Tour. This year’s event featured another great Static Display & BBQ as well!
We would like to thank our Chairman, BG (ret.) William King, our delegates, event partners, exhibitors, speakers and, sponsors for making NCT USA the leading CBRNe event held in the USA in 2019!
NCT PRO Trainings
The trainings were handled by our partners Hotzone Solutions Group (HZS) and MAC7 Training Services, each offering three realistic scenarios that were tackled by the six teams present. NCT PRO USA welcomed teams from the following organizations for a total of over 70 participants:
- Arlington County Fire Department
- Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department HAZMAT Unit
- Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department Search & Rescue Unit
- 52nd CST National Guard, Ohio (4 Units)
- D.C. Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department
- 7th CST National Guard, Missouri
Each training session started off with training provided by our sponsors, ensuring that the training participants were adequately informed on the functionalities of each piece of equipment that would be used in the mock scenario. The four settings with which teams were tested included a mock-up Hotel room, Conference venue, HVAC system and a suspect vehicle stationed at an airport parking lot.
An example of one of the scenario briefs which the teams received included a situation wherein an ambulance responded to a call from an apartment block where a resident had suffered from injuries after coming into contact with an unidentified liquid. Upon arrival at the site, ambulance personnel found the resident in the stairwell with burns on his arms. The injured person was agitated and spoke incoherently about bottles and lab-like equipment in a room he rented out to a student. At this point the ambulance personnel decided to call for qualified assets to deal with the situation and in came the training teams as seen in the below images after receiving the brief.
Having seen 3 days of dedicated trainings, the CBRNe Society and IB Consultancy would like to express their gratitude and appreciation to all the participating teams for showing a great eagerness to learn and be challenged, to our sponsors and our training partners HZS & MAC7 for providing and running the scenarios – we hope to see you all again next year!
The Opening and Closing Plenaries featured an impressive line-up of CBRNe professionals including: Dr. Robert Kadlec, Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, Department of Health & Human Services, USA who discussed the National Biodefense Startegy and the way in which the United States is building up resilience to biological threats; Dr. Eric L. Moore, Director, CCDC Chemical Biological Center, Army, USA highlighted how rapid advancements in technology and urbanization are majorly changing the landscape in which we defend against both chemical and biological threats; and Dr. Ronald Hann, Director, Chemical/Biological Technologies Department, DTRA, USA outlined the role that science and technology will play in defending our citizens against all threats within CBRNe. Col. LeAnne Moore, CWMD Division Chief, US Air Force and Mr. Douglas Bryce, Joint Program Executive Officer for Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear Defense, JPEO-CBRND, USA, closed the event along with others by diving into the roles that their respective organizations have and will play in defending the homeland.
Each speaker also highlighted the way in which each of their departments are working alongside one another to most effectively combat the CBRNe threats facing us all today. Looking forward, Dr. Kadlec asked the key question, “How are we going to protect our country against a range of threats, deliberate, accidental or natural that are going to happen in the 21st century?”
Conference session speakers challenged each other to think critically about past, current and future practices as well as possible common solutions to the threats raised in Dr. Kadlec’s opening statement. The role of the public-private partnerships and the use of technology were provided as some keys to mitigating these threats. In the USA, especially, a multi-level interdisciplinary approach is necessary to respond to all threats, incidents and future challenges.
As Anna Paternnosto, Director of Governmental Affairs for IB Consultancy and Vice-President of the CBRNe Society, stressed “CBRNe is a team sport” and we need all hands on deck in order to make this world a safer and more secure place!