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Civil Defence

Volume 109: debated on Saturday 2 May 1987

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15.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what proportion of county and district centres have been fitted with air conditioning systems and filters able to protect against chemical weapons.

This information is not kept centrally, but the Government have not asked that such measures be taken, and so far as we know none have.

17.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what research has been completed on probable civilian casualties within a radius of 20 km of military targets resulting from chemical attack.

In the absence of a ban on chemical weapons, the Government judge it prudent to conduct a variety of studies into the effects of chemical weapons and protection against them. This work is not yet complete.

18.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what protective equipment his Department issues to the police and fire service and to the civil protection volunteers who may have to work in the open under chemical attack.

None; a decision will be taken when the work on protection against chemical attack is complete.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will conduct a series of regional civil defence exercises based on the scenario of an attack which will include chemical weapons on ports, airfields and military installations in the United Kingdom.

The Government support and encourage regional civil defence exercises. These are intended primarily to test plans and procedures. Such a scenario would not be appropriate until the work on chemical protection is complete, and any relevant plans made.

26.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps have been taken to protect the public against the effects of chemical attacks.

61.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether his Department plans to provide protection for the general public along the lines already adopted by Switzerland, Sweden and Norway against the effects of chemical weapons.

19.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what guidance his Department gives to local authorities to provide for the protection of the civilian population against the effects of chemical weapons in their emergency planning.

None. These matters will be considered when the work on chemical protection is complete.

37.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what chemical detection monitoring equipment he proposes to issue to local authorities; and when they can expect to receive them.

48.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will arrange for tuition in chemical warfare protection to be given at police and fire service staff colleges.

51.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what equipment he proposes to issue to local authorities to detect the presence of chemical agents.

53.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will issue instructions on the signals to be used over the existing warning system to indicate a chemical attack.

Consideration will be given to these matters when the work on chemical protection is complete.

49.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what training the police and fire services and civil protection volunteers receive in protective measures against chemical warfare.

None at present, consideration will be given to this matter when the work on chemical protection is complete.

50.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation civil defence committee is doing any work on protective measures for the civilian population against chemical weapons.

The Civil Defence Committee exchanges information on a wide range of civil defence matters including protection against chemical weapons. It does not, as an organisation, initiate specific research studies.

60.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department when the revised version of the "Protect and Survive" pamphlet will be published.

The new civil protection public information material issued in December, is intended to replace "Protect and Survive" for peacetime purposes. In the event of an emergency, detailed practical advice on protective measures would be issued through the media.