Hazardous Materials Safety and Security Technology Field Operational Test - Volume I: Evaluation Final Report Executive Summary

The catastrophic events of September 11, 2001 and the ongoing war on terrorism have heightened the level of concern from Federal government officials and the transportation industry regarding the secure transport of hazardous materials (HAZMAT). Security concerns focus on the potential of HAZMAT shipments as targets for terrorists. HAZMAT shipments through intermodal connectors, modes, and facilities are all attractive targets for terrorists, and pose a much greater concern to public safety than most other shipment types. HAZMAT shipments, especially fuels and chemicals, are especially attractive targets due to the multiple points of vulnerability. These vulnerabilities exist at shipper, motor carrier, and shipment recipient facilities, and during shipment movement en route throughout the nation's roadway infrastructure. Numerous international and domestic incidents occurred over the past several years that demonstrate the real threat potential that HAZMAT shipments pose. For example, the following events all occurred in a 2-month period in 2002: March 31, 2002: A 29-year-old driver for a propane distributor drove away with a 3,000-gallon bobtail. He made a telephone threat stating that he wanted to kill President George W. Bush and that he would use the bobtail as a "bomb". April 11, 2002: A terrorist driving a truck carrying liquefied natural gas ignited his cargo in front of a synagogue on the Tunisian Island of Djerba, killing 17 people, mainly German and French tourists. Al Qaeda claimed responsibility for the blast. May 16, 2002: A tractor-trailer carrying 10 tons of deadly cyanide in 96 drums was stolen after three armed men held up the vehicle north of Mexico City. Six drums were never found. May 2002: A fully loaded tanker truck pulled into Israel's largest fuel depot and suddenly caught fire due to an explosive charge connected to a cellular phone. The fire was extinguished, but had the truck exploded, destruction and death would have resulted. Events such as these demonstrate the security and safety risks associated with HAZMAT shipments. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), working in close cooperation with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), has attempted to proactively address public and private sector HAZMAT security concerns by identifying potential security risks related to HAZMAT transportation and proposing solutions to minimize those risks. FMCSA embarked on a program to improve HAZMAT security and safety by using regulatory measures, security assessments, and outreach efforts. Part of this effort was to sponsor an industry competitive procurement to conduct a national-level field operational test (FOT). This resulted in FMCSA awarding a contract for a team led by the Battelle Memorial Institute (Battelle) (Deployment Team) to test currently existing major technologies that could offer solutions to minimize security risks of truck-based HAZMAT shipments. Supporting Deployment Team members included: QUALCOMM; the American Transportation Research Institute (ATRI); the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA); Savi Technologies; the Biometrics Solutions Group (BSG); Total Security-US; and the Spill Center. To evaluate the technologies tested in this FOT, their costs, benefits, and the operational processes require to be performed, the FMCSA, supported by the Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS)/Joint Program Office (JPO), awarded an Independent Evaluation contract in August 2002. Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) (Evaluation Team) led the Independent Evaluation for this HAZMAT FOT. This Hazardous Materials Safety and Security Technology Field Operational Test was focused on four different HAZMAT truck transportation scenarios representing the following industry segments: Bulk Petroleum, Bulk Chemical, Less-than-Truckload (LTL), and Truckload Explosives industries. The scenarios were chosen based on the results of a hazardous materials risk and threat assessment that was conducted as the initial phase of this project by the Deployment Team, and was combined with a desire to test the technology in different industry types. The risk and threat assessment methodology was used to identify the types of materials that were of highest concern, as well as the most likely attack scenarios (theft of a material, interception/diversion, and legal exploitation). Specific vulnerabilities were also identified during this phase of the project, which served as the basis for selecting the technologies within each scenario.

  • Record URL:
  • Corporate Authors:

    Science Applications International Corporation

    1710 SAIC Drive
    McLean, VA  United States  22102

    Department of Transportation

    Intelligent Transportation Systems Joint Program Office
    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590

    Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Publication Date: 2004-11-11


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Web
  • Edition: Final Report Executive Summary
  • Features: Figures; Tables;
  • Pagination: v.p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01003878
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Contract Numbers: DTFH61-96-C-00098; Task 9851
  • Files: NTL, TRIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Sep 18 2005 1:54PM