THE MAGAZINE

Bio/Chem Risk in Airports

By Marta Lawrence

Understanding the threat is the first step to preparing airports for chemical and biological terrorism, says a new guide by a joint team of researchers from Sandia National Laboratories and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. The report, which has been turned over to industry groups for distribution to airport personnel and facilities in the U.S. and abroad, makes concrete recommendations on improving security and conducting vulnerability assessments.

Past chemical and biological threats are discussed, as are methods for upgrading security and HVAC systems to deter attacks and mitigate the consequences if any do occur. Although portions of the full report are classified, a redacted version is available online.

The report comes on the heels of a recent announcement that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will open quarantine stations at select ports of entry throughout the U.S. These stations will be used to isolate and investigate cases of infectious disease symptoms, which may or may not be linked to biological or chemical terrorism

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