Skip Navigation

Close and don't show again.

Your browser is out of date.

You may not get the full experience here on National Journal.

Please upgrade your browser to any of the following supported browsers:

Team Enters Atomic Burial Site Following Leak Team Enters Atomic Burial Site Following Leak

NEXT :
This ad will end in seconds
 
Close X

Not a member or subscriber? Learn More »

Forget Your Password?

Don't have an account? Register »

Reveal Navigation
 

 

Team Enters Atomic Burial Site Following Leak

Workers initially detected no free-floating contaminants as they re-entered a New Mexico atomic site evacuated in February, the Associated Press reports.

A pair of eight-person teams on Wednesday descended into the subterranean section of the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant and set up a central operating site in its storage area, the U.S. Energy Department said. The move involved deploying technology to facilitate communications, as well as additional sensor systems in the waste area more than 2,600 feet below ground, the agency indicated in a statement.

 

The entry by the personnel, who wore air masks and other protective equipment, marked the first human foray into underground corridors of the salt mine since February. Workers stopped entering the area after warning systems identified leaking radioactive particles; since the Feb. 14 incident, signs of radiation exposure have turned up in no fewer than 21 employees.

The escaped contaminants triggered the facility's detection equipment 10 days after a vehicle fire in the underground area. Contaminants have reached the surface only in trace quantities, but the extent of contamination inside the site remained unclear, according to recent reporting.

"Today's efforts were a critical first step toward future entries that will expand the clean base of operations and allow workers to travel farther into the mine to identify the suspected source of the radiological release," the Energy Department press release states.

 

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.

Don't Miss Today's Top Stories

Keeps me informed about national leadership concerns."

Senior Military Officer

The best!"

Mark, Compensation Analyst

Timely and informative."

Dave, HR specialist

I can browse over breakfast or while on the metro."

AJ, US Army Officer

Sign up form for the newsletter
Comments
comments powered by Disqus
 
MORE NATIONAL JOURNAL
 
 
 
 
What should you expect from on Election Night?
See more ▲
 
Hide