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A Step Up For CBRN Protection

NCJ Number
Date Published
July 2008
2 pages
This article describes progress toward the development of a standard specifically for equipment that will protect law enforcement officers in the course of their dealing with chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) incidents.
Although existing performance standards for CBRN protective equipment currently serve other emergency responders well, a law enforcement officer's mission in responding to such incidents requires different performance requirements for protective equipment. The U.S. Justice Department's National Institute of Justice (NIJ) has been working closely with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the Department of Defense (DOD) in order to expedite the development and release of a new NIJ standard for CBRN protective equipment for law enforcement officers. In August 2007, NIJ organized a special technical committee composed of subject-matter experts, many of whom are members of the law-enforcement community. Other agencies represented are the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, DHS, DOD, and organizations that test and certify personal protective equipment. This committee has identified the specific needs and requirements of law enforcement, along with shortfalls in existing equipment standards and test methods. The committee is currently addressing these shortfalls and determining conformity assessment requirements.