The State of Florida's Radiological Emergency Preparedness and Response Program
J.J. Lanza and H.W. Keaton (Florida Department of Health)
Florida is a national leader in public health preparedness for man-made and natural disasters. Our state also has some unique challenges for health physicists including: both commercial and academic training nuclear reactors; a launch site for space vehicles containing radioactive materials; commercial product irradiation facilities; university medical and other research locations; military facilities potentially nuclear weapons capable; and, hospital and other sites where radioactive materials may be found. This presentation discusses Florida's radiological preparedness and response program should a natural or man-made emergency occur at any one of these sites. In Florida, management of this responsibility rests with the Bureau of Radiation Control, Division of Environmental Health in the Florida Department of Health. The Bureau of Radiation Control works closely with local, state, and federal preparedness and emergency management agencies. The Bureau's role following a radiological incident includes first response evaluation of radiation exposures and contamination levels, the provision of protective action recommendations to local officials, and the acquisition of additional radiological resources, as needed, for a proper response.