CAMDEN, NJ­ — On September 25-27, the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness (NJOHSP) piloted a three-day course from the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) called Maritime Rad/Nuclear Detection Operations Course (PER 350) aboard the historic Battleship New Jersey in Camden County.

Over the years, NJOHSP has developed a successful partnership with the personnel on the Battleship, who provided the classroom portion of the three-day training. The rest of the exercise was composed of maritime drills for public agencies to participate in on the Delaware River.

“We are honored and proud to have the Battleship serve as a resource for this important training program,” said Phil Rowan, CEO of the Battleship New Jersey Museum and Memorial. “The Battleship has successfully defended our nation in many wars and operations in the past. To serve as the venue in the future security of our nation is an assignment that she’ll gladly take on.”

Stemming from NJOHSP’s “Secure the Shore” initiative, this course focused on the Office’s continued effort to strengthen the infrastructure along the region’s waterways and ports.

The course standardized an operational understanding of small vessel maritime Penetrative Radiological and Nuclear Detection (PRND) operations, providing the skills necessary to execute missions safely and effectively.

“Training is the backbone of resiliency,” said Jared Maples, Director of the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness. “This course and our continuing commitment to partnerships with our law enforcement partners prove invaluable to preventing potential attacks and help to develop strategic plans for both short- and long-term solutions to emerging and evolving homeland security concerns.”

This marked the first time the course was offered in New Jersey. Local, county, state, and federal law enforcement agencies from Pennsylvania and Delaware, along with the United States Coast Guard, also participated in collaboration with other agencies. The Maritime Rad/Nuclear Detection Operations Course provided a unique maritime collaborations training opportunity.