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Radiation Emergencies
Emergency Response:

Ready to Respond: Federal Agency Roles in Emergency Response

Ready to Respond

Federal Emergency Management Agency

FEMA coordinates federal off-site activities for functions other than radiological monitoring and assessment. FEMA promotes the effective and efficient response by Federal agencies at the national level and at the scene of the accident. It keeps the President informed of all aspects of an emergency not covered by the Lead Federal Agency reports.

Nuclear Regulatory Commission

NRC is the Lead Federal Agency in an emergency at a licensed nuclear facility. NRC is responsible for monitoring the licensee, assessing the nature and extent of the emergency, and advising the licensee on recommendations for protective actions.

Environmental Protection Agency

EPA provides environmental monitoring and analytical services, recommends actions to protect public health, and assesses the consequences of radioactive releases to the environment. EPA operates the Federal Radiological Monitoring and Assessment Center after the initial emergency response phase. EPA is the Lead Federal Agency in an emergency involving radioactivity originating in a foreign country or a domestic emergency involving unregulated radioactive material. EPA also leads or actively participates with USA and HHS on the Advisory Group for Environment, Food, and Health, when convened.

Health and Human Services

HHS assists with the assessment, and protection of human health and helps ensure the availability of essential human services in case of a radiological accident. HHS provides technical and non technical assistance in the form of advice, guidance, and resources to Federal, State, and local officials. It also leads or actively participates with EPA and USDA on the Advisory Group for Environment, Food, and Health, when convened.

Department of Energy

DOE is the Lead Federal Agency in an emergency at one of its nuclear facilities, or in an emergency involving the transportation of a nuclear weapon or other radioactive material in its custody. DOE also leads the Federal Radiological Monitoring and Assessment Center during initial response to an emergency, with support from EPA and other agencies.

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