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Public Information - Nuclear Blast and Radiological Dispersal Devices

Before, During, and After an Intentional Release of Radioactivity


This section of the web site provides public safety information in the highly unlikely event of an intentional release of radioactive material occurring within the State of Colorado. This section of the web site has been developed to help you prepare for and respond properly in the event that a radiological dispersal device (RDD or “dirty bomb”) or a nuclear blast (a small improvised nuclear bomb) is detonated in your area.



This effort has arisen because of Colorado’s interest in getting information out to the public and those involved in public safety before an event occurs. This effort corresponds to the Federal government’s efforts to standardize and improve messages to various audiences about what they should do in case of a “dirty bomb” or nuclear explosion.

Each section of this site has useful information for public information officers, not just the sections labeled Public Information Officers. Please read all the material to familiarize yourself with the audiences addressed in this web site and the phases of an emergency involving the intentional release of radioactivity.

The material within has been drawn from the best practices of other agencies and jurisdictions, such as the Federal government agencies such as the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the Department of Homeland Security. Source documents for the information within are available upon request.

Because of the limited access to the web during a crisis and the priority access for emergency responders, this web site might not be available during a real event. You may download this material to your phone or computer so that you have access during a crisis.

The information within is divided into the three phases of an incident: before, during, and after the release of radioactivity. The target audiences are: public information officers, members of the media, elected officials, and the general public.


  • For public information officers the web site offers information and message templates to help them provide timely and accurate information.


  • The media sections offer background information and technical guidance to the media to help them distribute information and assist with efforts to inform and protect the public.


  • The elected officials sections provides guidance for elected officials on the incident command system and how they can contribute to public health and safety through their public statements to their constituents.


  • The general public sections give information directly to the public on how to prepare for a radiation incident and what actions they can take to protect themselves and their loved ones in the event of an incident.


Most of this material is adapted from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) web site. A Spanish language version of their material can be found by visiting their web site at www.cdc.gov.



Please contact us if you have any further questions