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Howard Hall

East Tennessee’s first responders—paramedics, police, firefighters and the like—got a boost in preparing for the unthinkable recently, as the Institute for Nuclear Security at UT trained them on response efforts following a nuclear incident. 

As reported by the News Sentinel, the course was the first of its kind offered in Tennessee, and quickly filled up due to an overwhelming response.

Howard Hall, head of the Institute and the UT-Oak Ridge National Laboratory Governor’s Chair for Global Nuclear Security, said the course came out of an observation made by the legislature.

“We’ve been teaching folks outside the U.S. for a number of years on behalf of the State Department,” Hall told the KNS. “We were asked a very good question earlier this year by some of our colleagues in the legislature who said, ‘Well, that’s really cool. Why aren’t you doing that for Tennessee?’ and that was an awfully good question.”

Hall, who works in the Department of Nuclear Engineering in UT’s Tickle College of Engineering as well as the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy, focused the he course on lessons learned from real-life incidents, including Chernobyl and Fukushima. 

The main takeaway?

Communication, time, and distance are the three most critical factors following such disasters.

More on the story can be read at Knoxnews.Com