EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is a regular summary
of operations at DOE’s Idaho Site. It has been compiled
in response to a request from stakeholders for more
information on health, safety and environmental
incidents at DOE facilities in Idaho. It also includes a
brief summary of accomplishments at the laboratory. The
report is broken down by contractor:
Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Project (AMWTP),
Idaho Cleanup Project (ICP)
Idaho National Laboratory (INL). This summary will
be sent to everyone on INL’s regular news release
distribution list every other week. To be added to this
distribution list, please call Brad Bugger at (208)
Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Project
Nov. 1: Two fire extinguishers, which are prohibited
items, were mistakenly processed in the Supercompactor
at the Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Facility. In
response to this incident, Bechtel BWXT Idaho suspended
Supercompactor operations. Concurrently, the company is
also retraining and refreshing employees on the policies
and procedures in place to prevent this type of
Waste Shipments: Fifteen of eighteen planned
shipments of contact-handled transuranic waste were made
from Idaho to the Waste Isolation Plant in New Mexico
for disposal during the week ending October 30. Eleven
of the shipments contained exhumed waste from the
Accelerated Retrieval Project. Eighteen contact-handled
transuranic waste shipments are scheduled for the week
ending November 6.
Idaho Cleanup Project
Oct. 20: During a safety review process, it was
determined that some cans of spent nuclear fuel may not
have been adequately included in the safety evaluation
for the Irradiated Fissile Material Storage facility.
Restrictions on fuel handling and personnel entry at the
facility will remain in place until a formal safety
evaluation is completed. (EM-ID—CWI-FUELRCSTER-2010-0004).
Oct. 25: While adjusting a newly-installed air handler
at IRC-601 in Idaho Falls, a worker removed a supporting
nut that held the handling unit in place, causing the
unit to fall. The worker was not injured, but the air
handling unit was damaged beyond repair. Work was
stopped and an investigation into the incident
Oct. 27: The incorrect burner unit was replaced in a
boiler at the Radioactive Waste Management Complex,
causing a pressure excursion in the boiler during
startup testing. There were no injuries and limited
damage to the boiler occurred. (EM-ID—CWI-RWMC-2010-0008).
Waste Processing: The first transfer of 21 Sodium
Loop Safety Facility canisters was received at the Idaho
Nuclear Technology and Engineering Center from the
Materials and Fuels Complex for processing in the
CPP-666 hot cell.
Idaho National Laboratory
Oct. 27: While moving radiation counting equipment
from a temporary shelter to a laboratory at the Test
Reactor Area, the equipment fell over sideways. Work was
immediately stopped and a critique was conducted.
Oct. 28: While performing cleanup of a legacy oil spill
at the Test Reactor Area, workers discovered an
underground oil line with a hole in it. The spill was
reported to the State of Idaho and residual oil in the
abandoned line was removed. (NE-ID—BEA-ATR-2010-0021).
Oct. 28: An electrician at the Materials and Fuels
Complex conducted hot electric work without following
proper work procedures. A formal stop work order was
issued and an investigation will be conducted.
Oct. 29: Suspect/counterfeit fasteners were discovered
on a glovebox at the Space and Security Power Source
Facility and related facilities at the Materials and
Fuels Complex. None were in safety significant
applications. Inspections for suspect/counterfeit
fasteners are continuing. (NE-ID—BEA-SSPSF-2010-0001).
Students Take Part in Science Academy: Designing a
500-day manned mission to Mars may sound like science
fiction, but 44 high school students did just that as
part of the first Idaho Science and Aerospace Scholars
academy this summer in Boise. The students from across
Idaho gathered at Boise State University to plan
alongside NASA officials, teachers and Idaho experts in
science, technology, engineering and mathematics. At the
end of the weeklong experience, Idaho recognized its
first 44 NASA aerospace scholars who join an elite group
of alumni across the nation. The Idaho National
Laboratory is one of the original partners in the
academy, and provided teaching support to the students.
Students work on an engineering activity at Boise's Discovery Center of Idaho as part of the ISAS summer academy.