CBRNE accidents and threats require fast reaction from the authorities. The Finnish authorities got to practice joint activities in South Savo region on September 10th to 12th, 2013. The aim was to boost and optimize the cooperation between different authorities and build facilities for situations with real CBRNE risks.
CBRNE risks may have very fast and extensive consequences. Thus, authorities need to constantly improve their abilities to react in a risk situation. A common authority exercise, organized by South Savo Regional Rescue Department, aimed to improve the cooperation and expertise of the authorities as well as to test their equipment and the compatibility of their systems. The exercise included different practical tasks such as simulation of a chemical accident, testing of equipment and decontamination systems, measuring and protection, taking samples, situation management, first aid and patient decontamination.
“A wide multi-authority exercise gives the authorities chance to cross-train each other and practice cooperation”, says Mr Seppo Lokka, Rescue Director at the South-Savo Regional Rescue Department. – The cooperation went through a very practical test, and the Finnish industrial companies opened up new perspectives to the authorities about the equipment available for risk situations. The companies, on the other hand, got valuable user experience from the authorities which they can use in their product development.
The common exercise is a part of wider cooperation among different authorities in Finland: the DECOVY project led by South Savo Regional Rescue Department and financed by the project partners and TEKES, the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation. The DECOVY project boosts cooperation among authorities by for example studying and defining a new and cost effective CBRNE training platform for the authorities, as well as by standardizing acquisition recommendations.
“A tight cooperation among the authorities is extremely important in a small country like Finland, where the resources are scarce and don’t allow overlapping. Our effective models of cooperation have evoked also international interest”, says Mr Toni Leikas CPT (ret.), Executive Director in CBRNE at Innovation and Technology Center Miktech Ltd.
A multinational group of experts from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) also had the chance to participate in the exercise, as they were being trained at the same time in CMC Finland, a Crisis Management Center located in Kuopio, Finland.
The participants of the common exercise included six different regional rescue departments, the Ministry of the Interior, Päijät-Häme Social and Health Care Group, Defence Forces Technical Research Centre, Defence Forces, The Emergency Services Colleg, South Savo Police Department, The Finnish Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority STUK, Innovation and Technology Center Miktech Oy and member companies of the CBRN Finland consortium (Environics Oy, Suomen Terästekniikka, Mirion Technologies Oy and IC2 Feeniks Oy). The environmental safety program Safesaimaa as well as CBRN Finland, coordinated by Miktech Ltd. participated in the organization of the exercise. iNemis –projects Observis Ltd. participated in exercise to collecting the user experience of the system.
Mr Toni Leikas CPT (ret.), Executive Director, CBRNE, Innovation and Technology Center Miktech Ltd., +358 440 361 628, firstname.lastname@example.org
Miktech Ltd. is an innovation and technology center in Mikkeli, eastern Finland. Miktech promotes research and business, with an emphasis in the creation of new technology solutions, growth and internationalization of innovative companies. It coordinates strategic business development clusters of the City of Mikkeli, and has an important role in the development of the region. Miktech also provides services with an international scope for example for business collaboration between Russia and Finland.
CBRN Finland is a consortium of world leading Finnish CBRN companies, specialized in cost-effective ways to create and develop step by step CBRN performance by modular and compatible solutions. The CBRN Finland member companies – Environics Oy, Mirion Technologies (RADOS) oy, Suomen terästekniikka (Mavatech) Oy, Sammutin (Saurus) Oy, TEMET Oy ja Miktech Oy – have large scale CBRN expertise with international customers, combined with strict technical requirements since 1950’s. Long experience guarantees our quality and competence. The companies aim to improve CBRN safety with their products and services. CBRN Finland wants to develop the cooperation and common concepts of the member companies as well as to tighten national and international cooperation among authorities.