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Intel Briefing – April 2012

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Mississippi River creates its own diversion at Bohemia.
The Mississippi River broke through its eastern bank at the Bohemia Spillway in southeast Louisiana, creating a natural diversion of freshwater and sediment that officials with the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation would like to see continue, the New Orleans Times-Picayune reported March 13. The breach is 32 feet wide and 5 feet deep and first broke on Mardi Gras, according to the executive director of the foundation. During the record flooding of 2011, the river was high enough at Bohemia that the spillway was over-topped for months. The water washed out a large section of roadway running through the spillway, and created a channel that almost cut through to the river. The river connection was completed by high river events recently, the director said, adding it is now rising again, with an expected crest the weekend of March 17. Scientists with the lake foundation believe the flooding of the spillway with freshwater and sediment has been a boon to its wetlands.

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Tens of thousands of emergency responders nationwide get training in HAZMAT program.
The American Chemistry Council trained 60,000 emergency responders nationwide in safety techniques for a common, yet possibly highly-dangerous chemical, Government Security News reported March 14. The council said through its Transportation Community Awareness and Emergency Response (TRANSCAER) program thousands of emergency responders across 37 states received training in the safe handling and distribution of anhydrous ammonia, a common chemical used in agricultural and refrigeration industries. TRANSCAER, it said, is a voluntary national outreach effort that helps communities prepare for and respond to possible hazardous material transportation incidents. Program members consist of volunteer representatives from the chemical manufacturing, transportation, distributor, and emergency response industries, as well as the government.

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Hospital audit finds radioactive materials unsecured.
Congressional auditors found many hospitals with lax or improper security of medical radioactive materials, the New York Times reported March 14. In testimony prepared for delivery to a Senate panel, a Government Accountability Office (GAO) official planned to say that people with responsibility for security told the auditors that they were trained as physicists or radiation health technicians and were being told to enforce rules “that they did not believe they were fully qualified to interpret.” The materials, such as cesium 137, could be included in a device with conventional explosives to make a “dirty bomb.”

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Posted by FanningCommunications on Apr 2nd, 2012 and filed under Intel Brief. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response by filling following comment form or trackback to this entry from your site

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