Stephen Nessen, Reporter, WNYC News
Stephen Nessen reports for the WNYC Newsroom and can often be heard live on Morning Edition.
The NYPD and a national laboratory will be studying how chemical weapons could spread in the air and throughout the subway system this summer in what is the first study of its kind in such a large urban environment.
Researchers with the Brookhaven National Laboratory will release non-toxic, odorless gas in that mimics how chemical, biological and radiological weapons would disperse. About 200 sampling devices will be used to detect to the gas.
"We want to be able to determine how toxic material can flow through the transit system, it's one of the concerns that we've had for a while and how it flows on the streets of our city," Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said in a statement.
The tests will begin in July in all five boroughs in 21 subway stations. It is not expected to have an impact on commuting or other activity, police say.
Boston and Washington have conducted similar tests, but this will be the largest.