Frequent Questions

How do officials know when it is time to carry out protective actions?

When a radiological emergency occurs, officials will use available information and computer models to quickly predict how much radiation people could potentially receive. They then use the PAGs to determine what safety measures can be taken to avoid or minimize that potential exposure.

Additionally, the PAGs are used to pre-plan for emergencies. Cities, counties, parishes, states, and tribes across the country use the PAGs to develop plans that would be carried out in case of a nuclear or radiological emergency.

For more information on emergency response in case of a nuclear or radiological incident, visit Radiological Emergency Response on

For more information about the PAG Manual, visit the PAGs page on

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