Energy Department personnel pretending to be terrorists reached a substance representing nuclear-weapon fuel after they fought through defenses in a January exercise at the Savannah River Site in South Carolina, the Project on Government Oversight reported last week.
Targets in a series of "force-on-force" exercises conducted at the facility included the H-Canyon Complex, which can contain up to several tons of weapon-usable uranium and plutonium, according to unspecified sources cited by the watchdog group.
The DOE Savannah River Office rejected a Freedom of Information Act request by POGO staff for unclassified findings from the drills, arguing that the materials still "contain sensitive security information."
The accountability organization, though, said "the results of these tests are vital to developing new and better ways of securing our nuclear sites."
"POGO has found over time that when the test results are released, the problems get fixed," the group added.
This article was published in Global Security Newswire, which is produced independently by National Journal Group under contract with the Nuclear Threat Initiative. NTI is a nonprofit, nonpartisan group working to reduce global threats from nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons.