Emergency Response to an Incident Involving Chemicals and Subsequent Decontamination of Affected Persons

The Fire and Rescue Service Hamburg  is arranging a full-scale exercise on 13th May 2017 in Hamburg, Germany. About 250 persons are taking part in the exercise and it is one of the biggest exercises that have been arranged in Hamburg.

The exercise scenario:

Material testing of pipelines is being conducted at the premises of a company. The radioactive source indicates high activity in Terabecquerel (TBq) range.

At the same time, an inland waterway vessel collides with a tanker. The tanker strands and heavy fuel oil is leaking out. The inland water vessel is badly damaged, but can make it to the port. Immediately after it docked at the port a damaged containment of a 20 ft. gas container UN 1079, sulfur dioxide, breaks open, releasing huge quantities of aerosol, which is spread by the wind. About 75 staff members doing inspection work at the pipeline systems are being contaminated.

The crew members of the inland waterway vessel make an emergency call and manage to go ashore, though injured. The plant fire department triggers an alarm and the command centre is alerted. Staff members of the material testing company are leaving their workplace in panic without retracting the radioactive source due to the alert triggered and the impairment caused by released gases.

The vessel crew is running into danger because of the cone of rays of the radioactive source.

The organisations taking part in the exercise:

  • Fire and Rescue Service Hamburg
  • Hamburg Ministry of Environment and Energy (BUE)
  • Hamburg Police Department (P)
  • Hamburg Ministry of Health and Consumer Protection (BGV) – here: ASKLEPIOS Clinic Harburg
  • University Hospital Eppendorf
  • supported by students of the University of Applied Sciences Hamburg (HAW)

Objectives of the exercise:

  • Support by BUE in the river Elbe (“Southern Elbe”)
  • Training of DeconP (decontamination of affected persons) and CBRN-investigation vehicle of the voluntary fire service units
  • DeconP and DeconV (decontamination of injured persons)
  • Co-operation with BUE units, assigned companies and the BGV
  • Co-operation with the plant fire department of Nynas
  • Co-operation with the tank terminal Shell
  • Co-operation with the Police
  • Reviewing the work of the command centre and improvement of communication.
  • Reviewing databases and improvement of data collection as well as exchange of data


Flyer ChemRad English

Flyer ChemRad Deutsch

More information about the exercise:

Mr Thorsten Grams
Head of Station, Technology and Environmental Protection Station
tel. +49 40 42 851 – 3201



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *