NTSB Training Center.

Federal Family and Victim Assistance Operations
NTSB/FBI Victim Assistance Rapid Deployment Team (VARDT) Joint Training


Presenters from the NTSB, FBI and other government and non-governmental agencies explored the basic competencies necessary to establish and operate effective victim and family assistance operations.


November 16-18, 2004

Location NTSB Training Center • 45065 Riverside Parkway • Ashburn, Virginia 20147
Overview Basics of Family and Victim Issues
  • Unique differences involving sudden traumatic / violent death
  • Basic needs of families, victims and survivors
  • Psychological first aid and self care 
NTSB Family Assistance Operations
  • Mission and Key Operational Areas of Concern
  • Structure of the team 
Accident vs. Crime
  • Operational Differences
  • Differences in Victim/Family Assistance
  • Victims of Crime Statutes and Compensation Laws
  • Non-Transportation events- Federal Agency roles
  • National Response Plan Overview
  • FBI Evidence Response Teams
  • Role of American Red Cross

Preparation for 24/7 On-Call Status

  • What to expect in disaster response
  • Go-Bags, uniforms, communications equipment
  • At home preparations
  • Typical NTSB Activation

Family Assistance Response Functions

  • Initial Concerns upon Arrival
  • Relating to and Integrating with Local Authorities
  • Family Assistance Center/Joint Family Support Operations Center
  • Morgue Operations and Victim Identification
  • Site Visits and Related Family Requests
  • Personal Effects
Performance Results Upon completion of the course, the participants were be able to:
  • Improve individual effectiveness when assisting family members and victims impacted by a mass casualty event
  • Describe and explain each of the operational response steps in a criminal event involving sudden or violent death
  • Work and interact more confidently on-scene with a variety of local, state and federal agencies  
  • Be better prepared (materially, physically and psychologically) for 24/7 on-call assignments 
  • Discuss in detail the roles, responsibilities and activation response protocols of the FBI VARDT
More Information Email TrainingCenter@ntsb.gov or call (571) 223-3900