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Emergency Planning

Radiological Emergency Response Contacts

2024 Radiological Emergency Assistance Contacts
2024 Radiological Emergency Assistance Contacts (black & white)

The Emergency Planning and Response Branch is responsible for radiological emergency planning (REP) preparation, training and response. The department responds to all radiation incidents and emergencies, including unexpected radiation releases from nuclear power plants, transportation accidents, lost or stolen radioactive sources, and contamination of a facility or the environment. To prepare for these incidents, the department trains its staff and other emergency personnel in emergency response and decontamination procedures, dose assessment, and preparedness for possible weapons of mass destruction. Staff also learns how to respond to nuclear reactor emergencies during four annual training exercises at the state's nuclear power plants.

Nuclear Power Plants

There are five nuclear power reactors operating at two sites in Alabama:
Units 1 and 2 at Joseph M. Farley (Southern Nuclear Company)

Units 1, 2 and 3 at Browns Ferry (Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA))

Every year, a federally evaluated exercise is conducted. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) evaluates onsite response while the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) evaluates the offsite response.

Other important documents include the following:

Documents for 10-Mile Emergency Planning Zones (EPZs)

Basic Radiation Training

Basic Radiation Training is available to all first responders, i.e., fire departments, law enforcement, emergency medical services, hospitals, communities, etc. in the State of Alabama. But to the demanding regulation of the nuclear power plant industry, the training is heavily concentrated around the two nuclear power plants. Please contact the Emergency Planning and Response Branch if interested in training.


Training Schedule

  •  2024 Training Schedule
  • To schedule training please email:  [email protected]
    • In your request, please include the following:
      • Type of training (or combination of such): EW, PEM, HMP, EMS, Radiation Awareness
      • Number of anticipated attendees
      • Entity being training
      • Name of venue for training (address included)
      • Date of training
      • Time slot to train

Documents for 50-Mile Ingestion Planning Zones (IPZs)

Information for Residents

There is documentation available for residents, people working in agriculture, etc. that are within 50 miles of a nuclear power plant in Alabama.



Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP)

Transuranic, or TRU, waste began accumulating in the 1940s with the beginning of the nation's nuclear defense program. Generally, TRU waste consists of clothing, tools, rags, residues, debris, soil and other items contaminated with radioactive elements, mostly plutonium. As early as the 1950s, the National Academy of Sciences recommended deep-geologic disposal of TRU radioactive wastes in stable formations, such as deep salt beds. Sound environmental practices and strict regulations required such wastes to be isolated to protect human health and the environment. In 1979, Congress authorized the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP). The WIPP facility, located 26 miles southeast of Carlsbad, NM. In 1988, The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) certified WIPP for safe, long-term disposal of TRU wastes. The U.S. DOE has established an elaborate system for safety transporting TRU radioactive waste to the WIPP for permanent disposal. The waste is transported in shipping containers approved for use by the U.S. NRC.

Expanded Radiological Emergency Response Team (ERERT)

The Expanded Radiological Emergency Response Team (ERERT) was formed under the authorization of the State Health Officer in 2007. During a radiation emergency, all divisions and organizational elements of the Department of Public Health needed to accomplish the mission will function as part of the Radiation Control Agency (RCA). The radiation emergency response actions of each organizational branch of the Department of Public Health shall be coordinated by and at the general direction of the Office of Radiation Control (ORC or ADPH ORC). The ORC is located in the ADPH Training Center & Administrative Annex in Prattville, Alabama.

If a radiation emergency occurred in an area of the state at a significant distance from Prattville, it may take ADPH ORC staff several hours to physically respond to the incident site to provide assistance in detecting and measuring radiation. In an effort to provide a more rapid response by ADPH, at least two (2) environmentalists and two (2) nurses from each Public Health District will serve as members of the ERERT.

The ERERT members are the first-to-the-scene agents whose primary duty is to provide the State Health Officer or his/her designee with an initial assessment of the radiological conditions, and to provide initial assistance in the resolution of radiological hazards. ERERT members are issued equipment and are trained to respond to an accident involving radioactive material. Besides the semi-annual training taught by ADPH ORC, ERERT environmentalists are required to attend the "Radiological Emergency Response Operation (RERO)" course sponsored by the Center of Domestic Preparedness (CDP) in Anniston, AL, and the ERERT nurses are required to attend the "Radiation in Emergency Medicine" course at the Radiation Emergency Assistance Center/Training Site (REAC/TS) in Oak Ridge, TN.

FOR ORC & ERERT USE ONLY: CRCPD Handbook for Responding to a Radiological Dispersal Device (RDD or "Dirty Bomb") - First Responder's Guide to the First 12 Hours (password protected PDF: contact ADPH ORC's Emergency Planning Branch if you forgot the password)

Courses for ERERT Members & KI Nurses:


Page last updated: January 4, 2024