"On the premise that the collection of delinquent accounts would be most adversely affected and in many cases would be impossible in a disaster area, the service will concentrate on the collection of current taxes. However, in areas where the taxpaying potential is substantially unimpaired, enforced collections of delinquent accounts will continue."

-- From the post-nuclear attack regulations of the Internal Revenue Service, Dec. 18, 1988, National Emergency Operations

Plans to relocate federal workers from buildings damaged by terrorists to other worksites appear to vary based on an agency's mission and its potential as a target for terrorists.

Many federal agencies appear to have no emergency relocation plan, except for one dealing with the aftermath of a nuclear attack.

But high-profile agencies with key defense or security roles have detailed contingency plans dealing with employee transportation and even, in some cases, the care of family members left behind.

All of the plans are classified.

A spot check of potential target agencies during the last week shows that all say they are prepared to do whatever it takes to keep functioning. This likely would include getting employees to new temporary worksites via shuttle buses and revamped car pools.

"It is really Armageddon or nothing," said the security officer of an agency that is not thought to be on a terrorist hit list.

"Everyone has tightened security but few have any plans for relocation." He said most agencies are ready for all-out war, but not for an individual shutdown.

Some federal workers have expressed concern about things such as getting children to and from day-care centers or babysitters if their normal workday were disrupted and lengthened because of a longer commute.

Some workers asked whether they would be allowed to come in late if they had to report to a distant worksite or if they would be eligible for travel pay if they had to spend considerable extra time getting to and from work.

"I can't tell you what we are planning because that would compromise security," a Defense official said.

"But you could tell workers that whatever their worst fears are, there is a contingency plan to cover it," the official said.

In the event of a serious threat or actual attack, some key civilian employees would be moved to a variety of safe sites -- many of them underground or inside mountains -- within 90 miles of downtown Washington. Those sites have cafeterias, work areas, sleeping quarters and supplies to handle a long visit.

Nearly all agencies have nuclear attack contingency plans for how they would continue to function if the central government or their headquarters offices were knocked out.

A Defense official said that families of employees called away would be taken care of, "but I can't give you any details" for obvious reasons.