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2005 April Report of the Auditor General of Canada

April 2005 Report—Chapter 2

Exhibit 2.3—Chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear events

The federal government has recognized that Canada is not immune from the threat of terrorism following September 11, 2001, and there is growing concern over the threat of chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear (CBRN) terrorism.

Potential CBRN weapons encompass a range of agents:

  • biological (such as smallpox and anthrax)
  • chemical (such as sarin gas disseminated by explosives or aerosols)
  • radiological/nuclear (such as radioactive material scattered by conventional explosives)

As with other types of emergencies, responsibility for CBRN-incident response is shared by federal, provincial, and municipal governments. Civil emergencies are initially dealt with by first responders—police, firefighters, and emergency medical personnel. If additional assistance is required, local officials contact the province or territory, who in turn can seek assistance from the federal government.

Source: Government of Canada, February 2003