DOE-Idaho Operations Summary

DOE-ID Bi-Weekly Summary
For the Period April 6 to April 19, 2010

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) and 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) 526-0833.

Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Project

April 8: A worker assigned to review lock-out/tag out compliance discovered that some maintenance work under way on the Super Compactor Bagless Transfer Port at the Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Facility was being performed without the required safety checks. All work involving lock-out/tag-outs was halted until it could be confirmed that the required safety checks had been performed. (EM-ID—BBWI-AMWTF-2010-0011).

Operational Summary

Waste Shipments: Through March 27, 2010, a total of 32,031 cubic meters of contact-handled transuranic waste, 87.64 cubic meters of remote-handled transuranic waste, and 2,278 cubic meters of previously buried transuranic waste were shipped from Idaho to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in New Mexico for disposal.

Idaho Cleanup Project

April 12: A subcontractor working at the Integrated Waste Treatment Unit construction site was struck by a piece of falling sheetrock and rendered unconscious for several minutes. The carpenter insisted he was all right, returned to work and drove himself home after the end of his shift. Later, the CWI industrial safety director drove the carpenter from his home to an Idaho Falls medical facility for a full medical evaluation. A sheetrock work stand down was initiated. (EM-ID—CWI-IWTU-2010-0002).

April 15: While excavating at the Idaho Nuclear Technology and Engineering Center, a backhoe hooked an underground conduit containing an electrical line, pulling a section of the conduit out of the ground and breaking the conductors inside. The conduit had not been identified on a drawing or on the subsurface investigation report. The crew stopped work and secured the area, and an electrician secured the energized wire. (EM-ID—CWI-IWTU-2010-0003).

Operational Summary

Decontamination and Decommissioning: Activities continue at the Idaho Nuclear Technology and Engineering Center. The exterior walls of CPP-601, the former nuclear fuel reprocessing facility, are being removed, the interior of CPP-602 is being stripped out and final demolition of CPP-630 is underway. In addition, work continues to remove excess buildings and structures at the High-Level Waste Tank Farm.

Idaho National Laboratory

April 8: An operator at the Advanced Test Reactor noted that the distribution breaker for the Plant Protective System channel C battery charger had tripped open. An attempt was made to reset the breaker, but it immediately tripped open again. The system is not required to be operable while the reactor is shut down, and it was taken off-line. (NE-ID—BEA-ATR-2010-0006).

April 12: An employee noted the presence of weathered rubber hoses lying on the ground outside of Building TRA-627 at the Advanced Test Reactor Complex, and that the hoses had apparently released oil into the ground. The area was inspected and the presence of oil and petroleum products was discovered. Environmental personnel were notified, a cleanup planned and state regulators notified. (NE-ID—BEA-ATR-2010-0007).

Operational Summary

Using Lasers for Cleanup: Lasers can do many things for us, from scanning barcodes at the grocery checkout to searching for life on the surface of Mars. And, according to chemists at Idaho National Laboratory, lasers might be able to help the nation respond in the case of a possible chemical or radiological attack. Lasers, the INL scientists say, could play a big cleanup role. Lasers could help scrub chemical- or radiation-contaminated buildings clean, returning life to normal as safely and smoothly as possible.

INL chemists are demonstrating lasers’ potential to clean up chemical or radiological contamination.

DOE-ID Operations Summary Releases

Last updated April 22, 2010

Contact Shannon Brennan