skip navigation links 
 Search Options 
Index | Site Map | FAQ | Facility Info | Reading Rm | New | Help | Glossary | Contact Us blue spacer  
secondary page banner Return to NRC Home Page
Emergency Preparedness and Response
What To Do
What Can I Do to Prepare for a Radiological Emergency?
What Do I Do in a Radiological Emergency?
Emergency Preparedness
How We Prepare To Protect the Public
Federal, State, and Local Responsibilities
Protective Actions
Emergency Classification
Emergency Action Level Development
Exercise Schedules
Emergency Response
How We Respond to an Emergency
Nuclear Facility Response
State and Local Response Actions
Additional Information
Frequently Asked Questions
Past Public Meetings on Emergency Preparedness and Response
Regulations, Guidance and Generic Communications
Related Information

How We Prepare To Protect the Public

A key component of the mission of the NRC is to ensure adequate protective actions are in place to protect the health and safety of the public. Protective actions are taken to avoid or reduce radiation dose and are sometimes referred to as protective measures.

The overall objective of Emergency Preparedness (EP) is to ensure that the nuclear power plant operator is capable of implementing adequate measures to protect public health and safety in the event of a radiological emergency. As a condition of their license, operators of these nuclear power plants must develop and maintain EP plans that meet comprehensive NRC EP requirements. Increased confidence in public protection is obtained through the combined inspection of the requirements of emergency preparedness and the evaluation of their implementation.

The NRC maintains oversight of the capability of nuclear power plant operators to protect the public by conducting thorough inspections. The NRC maintains four regional offices (Region I in King of Prussia, PA; Region II in Atlanta, GA; Region III in Lisle, IL; and Region IV in Arlington, TX) that implement the NRC's inspection program. In addition to these region-based inspectors, the NRC places "resident inspectors" at each of the nation's operating nuclear plants to carry out the inspection program on a day-to-day basis.

The NRC assesses the capabilities of the nuclear power plant operator to protect the public by requiring the performance of a full-scale exercise at least once every two years that includes the participation of government agencies. These exercises are performed in order to maintain the skills of the emergency responders and to identify and correct weaknesses. They are evaluated by NRC inspectors and FEMA evaluators. Between these two-year exercises, additional drills are conducted by the nuclear power plant operators that are evaluated by NRC inspectors.

Related topics below provide additional information regarding public protection.

To top of page

Privacy Policy | Site Disclaimer
Tuesday, July 10, 2007