Lautertal-Engelrod (Hesse, Germany). As a result of the ongoing events in Ukraine, the subject of civil defence and radiation protection is back on the table for those of us living in Western Europe

The rush to purchase iodine tablets and the warning from public authorities against the preventive use of the tablets reflects the general feeling of uncertainty among the public at large. But it was even before the fire on the site of Europe’s largest atomic power station at Zaporizhzhia in Ukraine that Björn Seling, the senior officer in charge of the Lautertal Dirlammen Voluntary Fire Brigade in Hesse, was drawing up plans to prepare his decontamination unit for action. On March 12, 2022 he therefore invited Timo Göhlich, the Radiation Protection Officer of NUVIA Instruments GmbH, to provide practical training for his team. The training focused on the principles of call-outs to deal with class A (radioactive) hazardous materials and the correct use of measuring instruments such as the CoMo-170 ZS contamination monitor. Two of these instruments were loaded into the specialist decontamination vehicle. The fire crew’s initial practical experience of measuring radioactivity was with two contamination search drawers. They also had the opportunity to train with the prototype “DolMo-SIM”. This measuring system consists of a gamma simulation source and the DolMo F dose and dose rate monitor equipped with a radio receiver. Thus the measurement crew were able to check the dose rate of packages containing hazardous materials against the value indicated in the transport index (value x 10 = dose rate in μSv/h at one metre from the package) and map a restricted radiation area of 25 μSv/h. The DolMo F simulator makes a realistic training deployment with radioactive materials possible even without a radioactive source, and with a dose rate of up to almost 100 Sv/h.