Emergency notification and reporting

The IAEA has emergency contact points worldwide that can use various channels to communicate with the Agency through its Incident and Emergency Centre. The Unified System for Information Exchange in Incidents and Emergencies (USIE) is a secure website maintained by the IAEA to enable countries to exchange urgent notifications and follow-up information during an emergency.

In an emergency, Member States require prompt, authoritative and verified information about the situation and its potential consequences. The IAEA’s Incident and Emergency Centre maintains a list of emergency contact points in Member States, States Party to the Conventions on the Early Notification of a Nuclear Accident and on Assistance in the Case of a Nuclear Accident or Radiological Emergency, and in other relevant international organizations. Via the USIE website, as well as by telephone, facsimile, email and video conferencing, the Centre maintains communication with these contact points. The IAEA’s Operations Manual for Incident and Emergency Communication outlines the arrangements for emergency communications.

More than 1,000 users from over 150 Member States are currently registered in USIE. The System not only facilitates the exchange of notifications and information between countries during an emergency, it also allows them to request information or international assistance. USIE is also used by officially nominated INES National Officers, who access it to share information on events rated using the International Nuclear and Radiological Event Scale (INES). While USIE itself is not a public website, information on events obtained from USIE is available publicly on the NEWS website.

To shorten the time needed to share information from national systems to systems used at international level, the IAEA uses the International Radiological Information Exchange data standard (IRIX) as common data standard for information exchange. Developed by the IAEA together with Member States and other international organizations, this standard enables the Agency’s counterparts to connect their information exchange systems, thereby allowing for an efficient exchange of event details. This is required under the Convention on the Early Notification of a Nuclear Accident. Details that can be shared using IRIX include information on the status of nuclear installations, releases of radioactive material and radiation levels measured in the environment. The IRIX standard has also been implemented in the USIE system.

Stay in touch