Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Disaster Science


Emergency Services Management


Today the potential exists for a terrorist organization to use a Radiological Dispersion Device or a dirty bomb within the United States. The results of such an attack could be catastrophic to the affected population. The response by law enforcement must be calculated and planned.

To properly analyze the law enforcement's role in a radioactive incident a qualitative approach was taken. A determination must be made prior to an attack to discern what kind of training will be necessary, what equipment will be required, and what response procedures need to be in place to ensure a safe and efficient response. Law enforcement must understand that the essential components of any radiation response protocol are to analyze the situation, secure the area, notify the required agencies and protect the general population. Training and equipment needs must be fulfilled.

Law enforcement must always keep in mind a radiological attack is a crime, and proper police procedure must be established to ensure the security of the crime scene and preservation of evidence. Research shows that local law enforcement agencies must have a usable radiation response protocol which can be used in the event of a radiological release.