Reuters: “Unsafe levels of radiation” were released during WIPP accident; More workers contaminated with plutonium — AP: Leak of radioactive material could’ve been “orders of magnitude larger”; Feds now testing air & soil 50 miles from site (AUDIO)

Published: March 31st, 2014 at 9:57 pm ET


Reuters, Mar. 27, 2014: An investigative team plans to re-enter an underground nuclear waste site in New Mexico next week for the first time since an accidental release of unsafe levels of radiation there last month, a U.S. Energy Department official said […] U.S. authorities now say that 21 workers at the Carlsbad-area “waste isolation pilot project” (WIPP) were exposed to radiation after the accidental leak from the site […] Testing of surface air in and around the Energy Department complex has shown elevated levels of radiation since the mishap […] That brings to 21 the number of workers who inhaled or ingested particles emitted from the decay of radioisotopes like plutonium […]

AP, Mar. 28, 2014: […] the DOE said it will expand its environmental monitoring to 10 more stations that will test air, soil and vegetation around Hobbs [50 miles from WIPP], Artesia [50 miles from WIPP], Loving [20 miles from WIPP], Eunice [40 miles from WIPP] and other nearby communities. To date, samples taken around Carlsbad have shown only radiation levels well below those deemed unsafe. […] Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board Chairman Peter Winokur said that for six days after the fire, no underground air monitors were operational, meaning that if the system failed when the leak occurred Feb. 14, “or if the release event had occurred three days earlier, the release of radioactive material from the aboveground mine exhaust would have been orders of magnitude larger.”

Big 2 News, Mar. 28, 2014: New developments in the radiation leak at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant […] A total number of 21 employees are thought to have been exposed to the radiation leak. Lawmakers are now raising questions about required safety inspections that were not performed at the plant prior to the leak. […]

Carlsbad Current-Argus, Mar. 27, 2014: […] New Mexico’s senators want answers about why legally required inspections for WIPP weren’t performed by the Mine Safety and Health Administration. NM senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich sent a letter to Labor Secretary Thomas Perez Thursday asking for a written report on why MSHA hadn’t performed the legally required inspections at WIPP. The information about missed safety inspections was revealed in the Department of Energy’s accident report on the Feb. 5 fire at WIPP. By law, MSHA is required to inspect WIPP four times a year. The accident report said the inspections had been performed twice in the last three years. “The health and safety of the workers at WIPP and the surrounding community are our top priorities and it is extremely concerning to learn that a fire in the mining portion of WIPP was a preventable circumstance,” Udall and Heinrich wrote in the letter.

KSFR’s broadcast on WIPP available here

Published: March 31st, 2014 at 9:57 pm ET


Related Posts

  1. WIPP Expert: Nuclear waste is getting out above ground — Plutonium / Americium found in “every single worker” on site when leak began — New Mexico officials ‘totally unsatisfied’ with lack of info from Feds — “We don’t know how far away it’s gone” — Continuing threat for long time to come (AUDIO) March 5, 2014
  2. Top Official: “Really concerned” over radiation release at US nuclear site; Feds “have put a noose around scientific personnel”… they refuse to reveal crucial information about WIPP disaster — Investigators becoming suspicious — Nuclear Expert: “It sure seems like there’s a cover-up” (AUDIO) September 6, 2014
  3. Radioactive contamination now reported in city over 20 miles from leaking U.S. nuclear site #WIPP — 10th largest population in state of New Mexico (MAP) February 24, 2014
  4. Alarm after ‘unusually high’ radiation levels at U.S. nuclear site — Gov’t: “We’ve never seen a level like we are seeing… I can’t tell you the amount” — Could be Plutonium — ‘Unclear’ how much radiation released — Unprecedented event (VIDEO) February 16, 2014
  5. Reuters: Investigation suggests another drum with plutonium ruptured at US nuclear site — TV: “There are new concerns at WIPP that there could be another radiation leak” (VIDEO) September 19, 2014

114 comments to Reuters: “Unsafe levels of radiation” were released during WIPP accident; More workers contaminated with plutonium — AP: Leak of radioactive material could’ve been “orders of magnitude larger”; Feds now testing air & soil 50 miles from site (AUDIO)

  • Ontological Ontological

    This WIPP dragon's breath went a bit further than 50 miles.

  • TheBigPicture TheBigPicture

    Trustworthy independent source is needed to measure the radiation.

  • johnnyo

    plan to go in soon
    maybe 2 month mark or so
    but hey, it's all good

  • nedlifromvermont

    Nuketards … destroying the Earth … for a shiny brass farthing … don't even look at the stability of the Salado Salt which, it turns out, is not dry and they knew it …

    Nuketards!! I like that one, seeing as "retarded" is no longer PC.

    Glad we're back in business!

    peace folks!

  • weeman

    The times they are a changing, the golden age of the nuclear industry has passed, we live in the digital age and we have access to more information and equipment and the TPTB can't pull the wool over our heads anymore, we see, now we have to make you see.
    I have a dream to.

  • Southbound Southbound

    How convenient that the monitoring systems failed for six days while the incident was happening…

    Curious… curious indeed…

    *strokes chin*

    • razzz razzz

      More like the monitors couldn't count that high or high radioactivity ruined the electronics.

      • Ontological Ontological

        Agreed. They were in the dark same as everyone. Cameras and monitoring equipment were no doubt trashed by the event.

        • We Not They Finally

          We don't have to get so esoteric. They probably just freaked at the readings and didn't report them!

  • WesternKyMan

    “Unsafe levels of radiation”

    I wasn't aware that there is a safe level that can be released…it's all poison

    • rogerthat

      no, no kyman, it's all safe, there is no unsafe level.

    • Southbound Southbound

      Ya, haven't you heard? According to Ann Coulter, some levels are actually good for you. Hey, if it's on the news, it must be true!

      • We Not They Finally

        Ann Coulter has a chicken brain all she needs is to fry herself. IM sure she would be delicious in her next incarnation as a chicken.

      • Ray Deoactive Ray Deoactive

        If someone gets exposed to radiation it is good for you. It's not good for the person that got exposed but it's good for you because there's now less radiation to come and get you. Thanx Ann Coulter for the clarification on radiation exposure.

  • Jebus Jebus

    The WIPP 21, a Fukushima control group.

    If you don't care about the millions of individuals left in the fallout, being compared to 21 individuals getting all the chelation they can handle.

    See, these guys inhaled plutonium with no immediate harm…

  • Jebus Jebus

    Nice that KSFR reports on New Mexico's Family Cancer Retreat in the same broadcast…

    "Since it began a dozen years ago, the spring Family Cancer Retreat has become the largest general cancer education program in New Mexico as well as the largest program of its type in the country. The three-day May second-through-fourth Albuquerque retreat is free for cancer patients and their families, and those interested are urged to register soon, as the event is expected to draw some 300 people. Registration packets are available at cancer-services-dot-org."

    Family Cancer Retreat is working in New Mexico…

    • Orwellian in its absurdness

      • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

        Making sure people follow/find that yellow cake road to their retreat.

        • We Not They Finally

          Yes, AND…. It's still better that people have this, and it's free. No, they won't educate about what CAUSED the cancers. But people still need all the help they can get.

    • andagi andagi

      Dear Jebus,
      'My inconceivable meter keeps needing recalibrating!!' Folks, keep reading, posting, sharing wonderful ENENews -generating change worldwide, 23/7!
      Aloha All.

  • razzz razzz

    Silly Senators, everyone knows that WIPP is experimental and exempt from Mine Safety and Health Administration inspections. What? They wanted the dump shutdown because it would never pass 'regular' inspections, don't enforce inspections then.

    The principles are beginning to turn and eat each other (long pig tastes like chicken). Finger pointing, misdirection, accusations, suspicions more like incompetence based on money worship (no jail time here).

    Collateral damage: Workers radioactively contaminated. Consequences: Radioactive salt mine has to be shuttered.

    • Southbound Southbound

      In human history, large towns and cities away from the oceans had to build around salt deposits. Salt is an incredibly important resource for us, especially before we developed refrigeration. We used to pay people in salt, hence the term "salary."

      We are leaving a nasty little surprise for future species to find long after we are gone. How disgraceful…

    • Shaker1

      I would wonder about the role that MSHA has in WIPP and, honestly, they're likely pretty happy not to have much to do with this. Would they even be concerned beyond the mining process, its equipment, and the personal safety there? I've not much familiarity with MSHA but they have a reputation of being strict. Then one also wonders, beyond the compromise of any mandate that would likely be necessary in this case, how much the budget cuts have impacted the agency. That truck fire might be a clue to the compromise as collection of volitiles in the vehicle is something specifically addressed and it's obvious that the safety culture of the mine was poor. I would wonder who is doing the actual monitoring of the physical mine. Because it's a 'pilot' plant, would that be Sandia? Again, if ceiling/wall collapse was involved, that's actually part of the 'plan', though it seems they thought of it more as a trash compactor than a large hammer doing the compaction.

      Somewhere in the paperwork there's a description of the roles of normal agencies, such as the agreement of the state itself regarding its regulation. Finding out will require some 'digging'. Funny, it seems to go over the heads of Senators that it might be actually they who willed this through their actions.

  • fireguyjeff fireguyjeff

    My question now is how big will the test radius get??!!

  • gfv

    Come on – How hard can it be for the WIPP wizards to check the plume charts put out by NOAA to learn exactly where and how much of this toxic hell was released and how to protect others from contmaination? This is from Valentine's Day and its April Fools day in a few minutes. We are apparently the fool to the entire nuclear industry.

  • I say WIPP it

    Tip it GOOD!

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      Stock, WeNotTheyFinally, whip it, WIPP it good! Shape it up, it's not too late, to whip it! WIPP it good!

      When Reuters makes an open declaration the levels of radiation released were possibly "orders" higher than reported, the world will take notice.

      • We Not They Finally

        Would love to. Just pessimistic about this area. As you might have noticed[!], just yesterday there were HUNDREDS of people demonstrating for twelve hours against police brutality in Albuquerque. They took over the university campus and walked right out on the freeway to shut I-15 down. There were tons of police in riot gears complete with gas masks.

        I guess that that's what they call a REAL crisis in these parts. (Not that they don't shoot people right and left. They do seem to do that!) On the other hand, the silent invisible odorless tasteless crisis which stands to kill SO many more people, is still pretty much getting ignored.

        If we knew where to go with signs and slogans, we'd do it. And we talk to a lot of people individually. But it's not a momentum thing here. Not yet anyway….

        • Phil Shiffley Phil Shiffley

          That type of stuff at one time might have been the lead story on the nightly news.

          Top trending on the internet is the outrage for the "How I Met Your Mother" finale.

        • HoTaters HoTaters

          Reuters is based in London. It is not U.S. based, and that makes a difference. It is in general more reliable for news about the U.S. than U.S. based reporting.

      • 富岡_Blue_Heron 富岡_Blue_Heron

        When radiation comes along
        You must WIPP it
        And then they post the numbers wrong
        You must WIPP it…

  • From the Reuters article:

    “…since an accidental release of UNSAFE LEVELS of radiation there last month”

    Later in the article:

    “NONE reached concentrations considered HARMFUL to human health or the environment.”

    How can an 'unsafe level' not be 'harmful'? 😉

    Especially knowing the FACT that anything above normal background increases your risks unnecessarily.

    • Reporters need to learn about Gum Shoe

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      Chas Aha, they're just parroting what sources in Carlsbad and with the DOE had said. It is utterly contradictory, which is IMO quite obvious.

      • jec jec

        So how much PU is SAFE to ingest or breathe? Anyone know that amount? Just saying CPM does not work well with PU..but AMOUNTS might.

      • HoTaters HoTaters

        The admission UNSAFE levels came out was made, and that is what is important. That the author later contradicted himself/herself is plain old stupidity. But the admission something unsafe was released is a huge admission IMO.

        Nevermind the usual numbskull "levels too low to be of concern" or not causing "immediate harm" disclaimers where made ….

    • We Not They Finally

      "Unsafe but not harmful." That should become "a chestnut" before all is said and done.

      My favorite is still GWB's "When we say war, what we really mean is peace."

      People need to be a lot smarter. But so many people need to get their brains untwisted first.

  • lam335 lam335

    POTR blog:


    I'm not sure how they know the WIPP people are planning to go down the shaft on April 1. I didn't notice that date mentioned in any of the articles posted here, and I didn't see it in the link they provide either.

    • Jebus Jebus

      No joke for the ones going in…

      WIPP: Crews to reenter mine for first time since radiation leak
      03/31/2014 05:20:25 PM MDT

      CARLSBAD — Workers at the Waste isolation Pilot Plant will go underground Tuesday for the first time since the Feb. 14 radiation leak was reported.

      • HoTaters HoTaters

        Thank you, Jebus. My thoughts and prayers are with the good people of New Mexico, anyone downwind, and the workers putting themselves at high risk re-entering the underground facility.

        • PurpleRain PurpleRain

          They should send in those cops who killed the homeless/camper-guy to see if there is any radiation and make sure they send them down there with all their riot gear (but WITHOUT the breathing apparatus)! That would be a fitting END for them. I'm disgusted about what they did to that poor man.

        • Phil Shiffley Phil Shiffley

          I don't know how they do it after watching so many of their peers falling ill.

    • WindorSolarPlease

      Unfortunately, radiation doesn't fight fair.
      Coexisting with it, is an impossibility.

  • lam335 lam335

    Has anyone looked at the comments posted on the Reuter's article?

    "…Considering every report I’ve seen involves becquerels (and seeing as any hotspots measured, to my knowledge, don’t even hit 5-digits, that’s a small release as it is, considering how small a becquerel is…"

    –What's a few teeny, tiny becquerels of weapon's grade plutonium? It's negligible until it reaches FIVE-DIGIT levels

    "The activity measured on the one air filter was < 1 Becquerel. That’s less than one decay event per second. Your own body has thousands of Becquerels of activity in it right now."

    –But the decay events in your body are mainly from potassium 40 and carbon 14, as opposed to the highly toxic heavy metal called weapons-grade plutonium.

    • wildandfree wildandfree

      You must not be so worried about all those damn little details, there's no problem here unless you probe for one. Have you seen the morning sun on the dessert flowers east of here? (Damn nukes, sarc of course, just frustrated) Glad Admin is back, truly hope the time off was for good not for stressful endeavors.

      • Do a townhall WIPP if you can, and don't be light on them, and ask mutiple questions, and pin them, WIPP them, tip it good!

      • HoTaters HoTaters

        From this article:

        New tests show plutonium reached millions of times normal levels at WIPP site — Concern air filters at plant may not have worked — Gov’t accused of lying about radiation leak (VIDEO)

        " Pu239+240: 0.115 Bq per sample [39 times the highest activity ever detected since testing began in 1997, which was 0.004 Bq per sample]

        Pu238: 0.004 Bq per sample [Never detected since testing began in 1997]

        Am241: 1.3 Bq per sample [2600 times the highest activity ever detected since testing began in 1997, which was 0.0005 Bq per sample]

        Only the all-time highest activity levels were provided. CEMRC director Russell Hardy discussed the normal levels during the resident meeting earlier this week in Carlsbad: 'I just want to reiterate, normally we do see ‘0’. For my radio-chemists, ‘0’ is not good enough. I don’t know how they balance a check book, because they don’t stop until they get to eight zeroes past the decimal point — that’s normally what we see.'

        This means a normal reading is at most 0.000000009 Bq per sample — making the recent Pu239+240 sample equal to 12,777,778 times higher than normal, and the Am241 sample 144,444,444 times normal levels."

        • We Not They Finally

          Keep pointing this out. There is so little education about there about the proportionality of the danger.

          • HoTaters HoTaters

            Yes, and THIS is what needs to be discussed and waved in the faces of these "officials." Enough of the obfuscation already. Did you watch the Livestream and see that stupid demonstration that woman did with the eyedropper showing how, since the radiation that got out was diluted it somehow (she implied) just wasn't there anymore? WNTF were there. How much can you insult the intelligence of adults?

            For anyone who hasn't seen the next to last LiveStream video of the March 20 (?) correct date? video, it's a doozy. Denial abounds as usual. Joe Conca looked pretty uncomfortable. Maybe all that lying his peers have to do makes him squirm a little.

            Or maybe he just had gas.

    • Well said Iam335.

      Indeed the W(r) for plutonium is 5000 to 115000 time greater than average radiation.

  • Simply this….why 6 days of coverup unless the release was massive….

    And they have 7 Curie per liter stuff down there……and 20,000 barrels of it, and 1 Curie can contaminate 165,000 Million Costco Chickens!

  • Sol Man

    Are we getting to the point where: glovebox air, good; outside air, bad?

    I am on the edge of my seat watching these events and hope for the best for all. Will be watching potrblog as well.

  • PhilipUpNorth PhilipUpNorth

    They are sending down 8 people.
    Today is the day.
    Here is the WIPP anouncement:
    I have been skeptical that they would ever get people into those tunnels.
    Always a possibility that they could trigger a gas explosion down there.
    Or get caught in another cave in.
    They are just taking photos and readings today.
    Hope they can do so without incident.
    As for me, I don't even know how they can remove plutonium-contaminated suits and masks without getting plutonium all over, and inside, themselves.
    Very dangerous.
    This is big.
    Stay tuned… 😉

    • bo bo

      It's so astounding that this is not national news.

      The nation followed baby Jessica in the well and the Chilean miners every step of the way – but if you ask a random person on the street today and ask about the workers entering the salt mines, most will answer: 'whaaaaa….?'

      • Southbound Southbound

        I've had to explain it to the handful of people I regularly interact with. No one seems to have a clue except for those of us actively looking for what I call "news that matters." Have you seen CNN lately? Wall to wall coverage of the missing plane. Tragic as it is, I still don't consider it "news that matters" and certainly not worthy of 24-hour coverage. There's so much going on in this world, but you would never know it thanks to our corporate media. Propaganda is running full steam ahead, and no one seems to notice.

        • bo bo

          So true southbound, lol I just posted about that…
          Helena Handbasket had a story from her zendo –
          She had a post earlier – her meditation teacher interrupted a session to give the class an update on the missing plane.

          I doubt any meditation sessions will be interrupted with updates on PU puffs from WIPP. They'll just keep telling you to breathe deep. 🙁

          • Southbound Southbound

            Breathe deep. The sooner you get infected and die, the sooner you can stop worrying about it. Hey, if there are no humans left to worry about the problem, then there's no problem. It's the ontological argument turned on it's head. No humans, no problem…

        • melting mermaid melting mermaid

          They should be put in jail, treacherous disinforming traitors. They mock our blindness while gouging out our eyes. How dare they claim to serve the public. They can take their cherry pickings' and shove them where
          the sun don't shine.

          • bo bo

            Thanks for the wrap up melting mermaid 🙂
            They mock our blindness while gouging out our eyes – then they'll tell you that there has been new medical breakthrough – with expensive surgery, your sight can be restored!

            (* update surgery will be needed every five years )

        • HoTaters HoTaters

          Southbound, it's all about distract, divert, divide, and conquer.

    • Actually, it is TWO teams of 8 people…

      First one team…

      Then another different one…

      • tooktheredpill tooktheredpill

        Standard Operating Procedure……

        Second team is only there on 'standby' in case the first get's in to trouble and a decision will be made to see if the second team has any chance of rescuing the first and will be sent in.

        In a regular mine collapse a second team is always on standby in case the first run's in to trouble. In a regular mine (coal for instance), trouble would mean a further collapse….requiring further support.

        In this case the second team would be useless if the first have succumbed to off the chart rads. 🙁

  • jec jec

    You can see ALL the WIPP public meetings at:
    And the one on April 3, at 5:30 PM New Mexico time. Live stream.

  • Nick

    So, WIPP may be as bad as my instincts have informed me these past few weeks.

    Hope some folks got a heads up earlier who may be down wind. The stuff released from WIPP is probably a lot worse than even I can imagine, since I just don't know WHAT the imported from everywhere.

    The meme continues to be TATAL…toxic at the atomic level…..there really is no such thing as a safe dose.

    In a sense, WIPP may prove to be a blessing in disguise if it slows down our nuclear madness by a few orders of magnitude.

    What will be agonizing, is the public's cluelessness as to how wretched the entire nuclear cycle is.

    We THINK we can tame this stuff. Radiation is invisible, tasteless, scentless, etc.

    May WIPP (and Fukushima/Chernobyl/Hanford/etc) be our final RIP for the stupid direction some humans chose to take.

    • Southbound Southbound

      As long as nuclear energy is profitable for the corporations that run them, which they are, and we are a fascist nation, which we are, then they will never stop.

      • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

        Problem is that they are not profitable and only become potentially profitable if and when they take in massive government/rate payer subsidies and/or can get extensions on their plants operational lifetimes. They achieve this by lying right in the beginning during the initial contract signings with laymen being bought off with bribes. Further proof that the entire Nuclear Industry has been/was built on top of compounding lies/curruption and nothing more. 🙁

        Shut these people down worldwide and do this now before they turn more people/life and nations into burn't toast. 🙂

        • We Not They Finally

          As big a problem is that people die SLOWLY, and there isn't a sign on what kills them telling them where it came from. It's the ultimate demon.

  • Nick

    Maybe the problem is capitalism and profits.

    Our world could become a benevolent socialist one if ENOUGH people demand it.

    Obviously, TPTB, ain't gonna have none of that!

    To barter will become a way to survive. The move towards a cashless society is fraught with dangers.

    Living simply so that others may simply live will no longer be some quaint ideal, but the only human trait acceptable.

    We are in for some dark days folks.


      great idea, Nick. Take what little property and rights remains in the hands of the individual and put it in the hands of those who got us here. Can I borrow a razor, Nick? I've run out of razors! Seems the rations of razors hasn't come in. I get so depressed sometimes; twirling this old razor blade about and wondering if thing's ever get better. Hmmm…hate being at the end of the line…might run-out of razors…

      • HoTaters HoTaters

        Might as well build youself a couple of these along with learning how to make razors from objects found in nature …. (posted here by Pattie B.)

        Am going to do this soon. Then just have to figure out how to use it w/o burning my house down!

        There is a 2+ hour version of the "how to" video online, and the "condensed" (time lapse) version in Russian.

  • cooterboy

    Glad your back Ene.

    I've read nothing about MSHA and what they plan to do. If these guys are doing their job they should be along for the ride into this mine as first responders. The Sandia troops will lie through their teeth, the mine safety team is required to report the data obtained from their observations and readings to publish.

    The real problem with these subcontractors is that they don't have to tell the outside world what they found. This data is only reported to the lead contractor or owner of the mine to do as they see fit. I expect no news to come from this team that enters the mine. Will wait for the spin to begin.

    What ever happened to trust but verify?


  • We Not They Finally

    I live in Albuquerque could winds have taken it close to where I live? or are they lying about that also.Gov leaders who lie should be indictable and the punishmnent should be loss of job and long prison sentences….If they lie and threaen the peoples lives from such lying their must be bold actions that can be taken.

  • Nick


    Assume that WIPP has leaked before. The truck fires and the 2/14 "puff" are the known events.

    The wind blows hither thither and yon, thus do atoms that no one wants as well.

    As to Gov. leaders lying….. you betcha.

  • How dangerous is that plutonium coming out of WIPP?

    Same danger as the plutonium that came out of FUKU…

    How Dangerous Is 400-6000 Pounds Of Plutonium Nano Particle Dust Liberated By Fukushima? Via @AGreenRoad

    • jec jec

      .5 microgram of PU is FATAL in humans per the link from GreenRoad. So by just mentioning totally off base to describe the danger of PU or AM. What was the BQ/m3 found on the filters? The ones farther away from WIPP? Now THAT is important if the volume/amount, not CPM is identified. Anyone know or have an idea of the amount in say a cup of dust if extrapolated from the filter numbers? A cup of dust is what I find in my vacume cleaner after a dusty day…

  • ftlt

    What is the ongoing situation inside, is my question? This like all else nuclear is coated in untruths and lies is my take – and not for my safety either.

    We will be the last to know – that is only thing that is clear WIPP.

  • Nick

    It is my understanding that the WIPPees wanted to test Salt Deformation with heat to simulate the heat given off (160F +) by some of the nuclear waste stored (to be) there.

    Given that 1,000s of barrels, boxes, canisters,drums,etc are stored there now, we can assume that some of them ARE radiating infrared energy as we speak into the confines of the mine.

    WIPP is one GIANT experiment itself and one wonders if the intentional experiments that humans are doing in hidden corners of the mine are safe.

    We know that stuff from Hanford and LANL was sent to WIPP. Also that HEU from Russia was delivered there.

    It is quite possible that some of the problems at WIPP are due to unanticipated heat load deforming the salt ceilings and initiating failure prematurely….before the computer models "thought" the salt closures were supposed to happen.

    This is just HEAT we are talking about. I can't venture a guess about corrosive vapor releases since I just don't know.

    • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

      Yep, sounds very logical.

    • jec jec

      You can thank Sandia Labs, the project was posted earlier on one of the WIPP/ENENEWS blog areas. Not a nice took the idea of heating to destroy/incinerate radioactive materials to a whole new level. They had 'sensors' around the large reactor sized container which was for HIGH LEVEL radiation. The US Government/DOE, renamed what they called high level radiation in order to put it in WIPP. Renamed, and then approved by DOE "executive decision" that the 'canned' radioactive material was 'safe.' Your tax dollars at work. Someone needs to go to jail just like we taxpayers would if WE TRIED to defraud like DOE did. Its right up there with the GM ignition lies..and coverups. Even MORE in fact due to the criminal releases of radiation that was NOT supposed to be in WIPP..

  • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

    Like I stated, turn over any rock anywhere, and you know what you will find.. 🙁

    • Shaker1

      Yeah, obewan, likely the bugs and the worms that might survive the messes we've made.

      At times one can't blame Sandia too much. They're tasked to thinking of things like this by others. It's one thing to come up with the idea, and quite another to get the funding. Those others were determined to do what they did, so it's best to at least have the better minds on it. While I don't support WIPP (never did) there are so many others which have pockets to carry the blame, from the DOE who allowed such poor management and mandated what was there, to anyone responsible for lack of funding and proper oversight. As I said, I've worked on projects just about everyone who knew anything was aware was a dream (though not on this order; I would have refused to work on it), but the money was there, someone was going to do it, and it may as well have been us. While there may have been few of the order of whistleblowers, that's the nature of the beast and the vetting process. Amazing to me were the 'true believers', but I guess that's also the nature of the educational system and the vetting process. Does one blame the butcher for the poor quality of the meat? Might our representatives get an idea that they're making (and worse, delegating) very important decisions that are totally outside of their range of knowledge to even find the pertinent questions or willingness to fund reponsibly?

      • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

        Certainly most often the case.."very important decisions that are totally outside of their range of knowledge" 🙁

  • Nick

    "Rev. David Wilson Rogers, of the First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in Carlsbad, said: “This facility has the opportunity to give a blessing to the world by having a safe repository.”

    Amen bro.

    Maybe we should call it a suppository.

  • jec jec

    Winds are blowing towards the N and NW. RADNET shows a problem with a couple of monitoring stations…today is the opening of WIPP..and South
    Valley NM (to the NW of WIPP) is OFF as of 3/31/2014. What a help to everyone there. Of course, this dosimeter system only can register the amount of PU and AM could only be determined by the AM gamma radiation, then PU would be a higher factor of that amount.
    .5 microgram of PU is deadly, it can cause heart issues/strokes sooner than cancer. BUT if the workers at WIPP got PU ingestion, males especially should NOT have children until the radiation is gone…after how many years? Is WIPP considering this, and the fact it can take up to 20 generations to see the full DNA damage. So those workers had better get good genetic doctors to check them out…

  • We Not They Finally

    Some of the keywords in the above article are "for six days after the fire, no underground air monitors were operational." That means that they WERE operational, but the readings were too ghastly high to release!

    We were in New York at 9-11. The EPA's air monitoring for THE FIRST TWELVE DAYS were never released. Like maybe they just didn't monitor? OF COURSE they monitored! The readings were just too crazy-high to release.

  • Nick

    We know about the truck fire, how it was in the salt mining area and not in the waste zone. What we DON'T know is, what the hell happened on 2/14, you know, the "puff" event?

    Then there is the mystery of why a ceiling collapse is an issue since the WIPPees SAID the salt was self sealing, that the salt was supposed to seal the stuff away from our precious biosphere, for like, forever.

    The project was sold as a giant trash compactor, seems like it did just that.


  • Sol Man

    Now testing 50 miles out….
    This can't be nearly good enough. As I watched the wind direction and speeds fter the event it seems that the gust in the SW were going up to 35 mph at that time and for several days (weeks ?) afterward. The went e/ne, then north.

  • jackassrig

    "If I dood it, I gets a whipping." Red Skelton. Well they dood it and now they're getting WIPPed.

  • Pete

    Re-entry has been "postponed" due to not receiving the needed equipment.

    Seems like they might want to track that package in order to provide a more accurate timeframe.

    Nah, never mind, whats the rush?

    • Sickputer

      So they can't receive the needed dosimeters to the billion dollar nuclear waste mine.

      Sounds like a typical nucleorat screwup. We would be a lot better off if Walmart or Amazon were handling the procurements for this helpless screwed up bunch of naked apes. They prove their incompetence on an hourly basis.

      Madness in New Mexico…

    • wildandfree wildandfree

      When it gets there, they will find that part "A" doesn't fit with part "B" so they will have to reorder. So much better for the press than to say the preliminary readings outside the gate were way too high to enter even with protective equipment. Good thing their lead underwear doesn't rust, just go back to the truck and order more stuff.

  • Heart of the Rose Heart of the Rose

    Letter mentions “safety issues” at operating defense nuclear facilities

    1) The Hanford site in Richmond Washington.
    2) Fernald Closure project in 18 miles northwest of Cincinnati, Ohio.
    3) Idaho National Laboratory Idaho Falls, ID.
    4) Los Alamos National Laboratory in Los Alamos, New Mexico.
    5) Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, CA.
    6) Miamisburg Environmental Management Project in Miamisburg, OH.
    7) Nevada National Security Site, 75 miles from Las Vegas, Nevada.
    8) The Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.
    9) The Pantex Ordnance Plant in Amarillo, Texas.
    10) Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site in Denver, CO.
    11) Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, NM.
    12) Savannah River Site in Aiken, SC
    13) Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Carlsbad, NM.
    14) West Valley Demonstration Project in Buffalo, NY.


  • waiono

    Mar 31, 7:24 PM EDT

    Energy Department officials confirm 4 more workers contaminated at New Mexico nuclear dump

    CARLSBAD, N.M. (AP) — The Department of Energy says tests show four more workers were contaminated with low levels of radiation during a leak at federal government's underground nuclear waste dump.
    Officials also said Monday that they're planning to get a crew underground Tuesday for the first time since the Valentine's Day accident at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in southeastern New Mexico.
    The DOE says a total of 21 workers received low doses of radiation, all well below levels deemed unsafe.
    On Tuesday, the DOE said it plans to send a team of team of eight experts into the half-mile deep mine to begin setting up bases from which they can start investigating what caused the leak.
    The dump is the nation's only permanent underground repository for low-level radioactive waste from nuclear weapons facilities.

    Read more: