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Chemical Weapons of Convenience/Opportunity
Hosted by Agency for Toxic Substances & Disease Registry/American College of Medical Toxicology
EPA Region 10 and Other Sponsors

The horrible tragedy, which resulted when terrorist crashed a hijacked commercial airliner into the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, demonstrated the lethal potential and our tremendous vulnerability to weapons of convenience or opportunity (WOC/O). Many now believe that terrorist attacks in the US are more likely to involve WOC/O than conventional nuclear, biological or chemical warfare agents. This one day course provides an awareness-level training of the potential medical and psychological consequences of chemical WOC/O. Chemical WOC/O may be toxic industrial chemicals (TICs), toxic industrial materials (TIMs), agricultural chemicals or other locally stored chemicals, which may be used by terrorists against our community. An understanding of the hazards and vulnerabilities to WOC/O agents is essential for adequate emergency preparedness. Conventional nuclear, biological or chemical warfare agents will not be included in this course.

Course Objectives:
By attending this one day course the participant will be able to:

  • Describe the potential routes of exposures to WOC/O.
  • Describe the major medical effects of WOC/O.
  • Describe the psychological impact of toxic and perceived WOC/O exposures.
  • Describe the role of regional poison centers and medical toxicologists in WOC/O and hazmat incidents.
  • Use EPA Risk Management Plan (RMP) data to assess local chemical hazards and vulnerabilities.
Target Audience:
The information presented will be valuable to professionals involved in chemical terrorism preparation and response including emergency response and on scene coordinators, first responders (fire, EMT, HazMat, paramedic team members), first receivers (emergency department care providers), hospital emergency preparedness staff, occupational medicine care providers, public health officials, law enforcement agencies, administrative agencies, toxicologists and industrial hygienists. For general information contact Jeffry Rodin by telephone at 206-553-6709 or via e-mail at

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