Photo of Professor Paul Thomas speaking at the research showcase in London

Influential leaders attend TOXI-triage research showcase

International experts and influential stakeholders – including leaders in the NHS, police, military and ambulance service – attended the Loughborough University TOXI-triage research showcase at Altitude 360, London on 26 June.

TOXI-triage is a pioneering research project that will revolutionise the way emergency services across the world tackle life threatening chemical, biological, radioactive, or nuclear (CBRN) incidents.

It has brought together experts from across Europe to strengthen our readiness for a catastrophic event, by developing new ways to give sound medical care to CBRN casualties amid the confusion, disorder and danger such an incident would bring. In an age where CBRN emergencies, both accidental and deliberate, pose a real threat to society, the project is creating new integrated systems and technologies to aid first responders and ultimately save lives.

Funded by the European Commission, TOXI-triage, which is led by Loughborough, brings together 19 teams from across Europe, spanning the emergency and health services, defence, industry, and university academics.

Paul Thomas, Professor of Analytical Science from Loughborough’s Department of Chemistry, is leading the project. He said: “Over the last four years some of the strongest teams across Europe have been working together to help ensure society can respond to and tackle a CBRN incident in the best possible way.

“We live in a time where CBRN terrorism is a real threat, and incidents such as the Birling Gap gas cloud and Japan’s Fukushima nuclear crisis illustrate how CBRN incidents can and do occur as a result of human error or a natural disaster.

“The emergency services need to have the best possible information when a CBRN incident occurs, in the quickest time possible without having to put further lives at risk. TOXI-triage has created new hot zone assessment, diagnostic, communications and track and tag triage technologies, along with an integrated system that pulls all the information together in real time.

“TOXI-triage is truly revolutionary and sets to rewrite the way a CBRN incident is managed.”

Speaking at the event, Loughborough MP Nicky Morgan said: “It is easy for me to champion the research at Loughborough University as it really does change lives. This is an example of frontline work that is making a tremendous difference and we will see its impact in future years.”

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