Secure Buildings: Pre-Event – Immediate Advice
Airflow and Polutant Transport Group
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Advice for Safeguarding Buildings
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Last Updated
April 27, 2005

Pre-Event – Immediate Advice

  1. Prevent unauthorized access to air intakes; air exhausts might also be a concern

The easiest way for a terrorist to quickly contaminate a building with chemical or biological agents is to introduce the agents into the building's ventilation system. (More)

  1. Secure mechanical (HVAC) room doors to prevent unauthorized access

A terrorist with access to a building's HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) equipment can quickly contaminate the entire building. (More)

  1. Secure building plans and HVAC plans from unauthorized access

A terrorist can maximize the casualties from an indoor chem/bio attack if they have knowledge of the building's ventilation system. (More)

  1. Develop an emergency response team

Any emergency requires rapid response in a number of areas: evacuation assistance, communication with authorities, etc. (More)

  1. Plan and practice separate emergency response procedures for indoor and outdoor releases of chem/bio agents.

The first response to an outdoor chem/bio release should include shutting down the building's ventilation system and closing all doors and windows. In contrast, the response to an indoor chem/bio release should include evacuation. (More)

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