weapons would require as soon as possible, while gross chemical contamination on a salvaged vehicle
would have extremely low priority.
If a radiologically contaminated vehicle, weapon, structure, or land area is not needed for an extended
time, the hazard would diminish to a safe level by aging of the contamination.
c. Time required for decontamination operation.
Complete decontamination operations take time and are only scheduled as the situation and mission
permit. The time required to perform an operation must be weighed against the time allowed by the
mission. Gross contamination by persistent agents on critical equipment necessitates decontamination,
but time often is not available for complete decontamination.
In these situations, partial
decontamination is performed.
For example, a tank battalion in a defensive position that has been contaminated with a persistent
chemical agent cannot be withdrawn long enough for complete decontamination.
decontamination will be performed first, since it can be done quickly.
The level of contamination is determined by the need for the area. An area that is not being used can be
decontaminated by weathering or aging. A radiologically contaminated bridge over which vehicles and
personnel pass rapidly need not be decontaminated as extensively as a command post area where
personnel stay for long periods of time. Remember, complete decontamination operations take time
and, therefore, are only scheduled as the situation and mission permit.
PART B - DECONTAMINATION SITE SELECTION
Decontamination will always be accomplished in an area free of contamination. The site must be
selected with care to ensure that it will not present a hazard to friendly troops. Sites selected for
operational or thorough decontamination should have certain characteristics in common. These
a. Site Selection.
There are several key factors which should be considered when selecting a site that is suitable for the
type of decontamination operation that is needed. The contaminated unit chooses an operational
decontamination site, a place where little preparation is required, and coordinates with its battalion.