NTSB Training Center.


Transportation Disaster Response - Mass Fatality Incidents for Medicolegal Professionals


This course examines the principles of victim recovery and identification and the associated family assistance procedures for successfully managing mass fatality incidents involving transportation related accidents.

In addition to classroom presentations, participants will conduct a simulated search and recovery exercise and conduct the initial operation of a disaster morgue. Course faculty includes NTSB responders, forensic scientists, and federal agency representatives with a variety of experience in mass fatality response.

ID Code


Dates, Tuition
and Fee

TBD for 2014
$1,198 early registration
$1,248 late registration

$100 processing fee will be added to tuitions for all offline applications. A tuition invoice can be ordered for a $25 processing fee.


9 am - 5 pm


NTSB Training Center • 45065 Riverside Parkway • Ashburn, Virginia 20147


Not available

Apply to Attend





  • History and evolution of mass fatality incident response
  • Roles of federal agencies involved in transportation mass fatality response events
  • Victim recovery and working with the FBI Evidence Response Team
  • Theory and practice of victim identification, including the use of DNA technology
  • Family assistance center operations and family briefings
  • Management of personal effects
  • Collection of antemortem data (medical, dental, DNA)
  • Changes in procedures in criminal events
  • Survival factors issues for the forensic responder
  • Post-response issues: site visits, memorials, family interactions, site mitigation
  • Media relations in mass fatality events
  • Practical exercises in recovery and morgue operations

Performance Results

Upon completion of this course the participant will be able to:

  • Explain the processes and methods employed in a mass fatality incident response
  • Clarify the roles of the state and federal government agencies
  • Define federal laws impacting the management of transportation disasters
  • Discuss the role of forensic science in a mass disaster scene
  • Recognize the role of the NTSB, the FBI and other federal agencies during a mass disaster
  • Identify the challenges of integrating ante mortem and post mortem data during a mass fatality incident
  • Define what role DNA plays in the identification process and the role of pathology as it relates to the investigation
  • Discuss the role of survival factors investigation by the NTSB
  • Explain the issues involved with family assistance including
  • family briefings, site visits, memorials and personal effects

Who May Attend

  • Medical examiners and coroners
  • Local, state, and federal medicolegal investigators
  • Forensic scientists: anthropologists, odontologists, pathologists, DNA analysts
  • DMORT team members
  • Military mortuary team members and related personnel
  • State emergency management agency employees
  • Municipal, county, state, and federal law enforcement agency personnel
  • Members of the academic community attending for research purposes (on a space-available basis)


Area hotels and restaurants


Washington Dulles International (IAD): 10 miles
Washington Ronald Reagan National (DCA): 30 miles
Baltimore/Washington International (BWI): 60 miles

More Information

Email TrainingCenter@ntsb.gov or call (571) 223-3900

Courses, forums and symposia are added to the schedule throughout the year.  Subscribe to the e-newsletter to learn about upcoming events and new programs: http://www.ntsb.gov/trainingcenter/list/list_mw020207.htm