Oct. 5, 2010

DOE-ID Bi-Weekly Summary
For the Period Sept. 14-Sept. 27, 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 site. 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

Sept. 14: While loading drums of transuranic waste into a standard waste box at the Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Project, incorrect data for the drums was entered into the Waste Tracking System. The Waste Tracking System would not accept the data, the shift supervisor was notified and all work was stopped. (EM-ID—BBWI-AMWTF-2010-0022).

Operations Summary

Waste Shipments: Eighteen contact-handled transuranic waste shipments and two remote-handled transuranic waste shipments were sent from Idaho to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in New Mexico for disposal the week ending September 25, with eighteen more shipments scheduled in the week ending October 2.
Idaho Cleanup Project
Sept. 21: An electrical foreman at the Accelerated Retrieval Project VII construction area tripped, fell and suffered a fractured leg. He was diagnosed and treated by an offsite orthopedic specialist. Housekeeping was performed at the construction site, and a “safety pause” was held with workers in the area to discuss the injury and walking/working surfaces. (EM-ID—CWI-RWMC-2010-0007).

Operations Summary
Grouting Completion Ahead of Schedule: The Idaho Cleanup Project safety completed a remedial action five weeks ahead of schedule that protects the Snake River Plain Aquifer by grouting buried waste at the Subsurface Disposal Area. The project was funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

Idaho National Laboratory

Sept. 14: A maintenance worker at the Materials and Fuels Complex was installing a back plane to the back of a routing junction box when he noticed an electrical spark. The worker stopped work and notified his supervisor. The circuit breaker to a wire bundle within junction box was locked and tagged out of service. Insulation to one of the wires within the bundle appeared to be damaged. (NE-ID—BEA-MFC-201-0006).
Sept. 16: While workers were handling radioactive material in a shielded glovebox at the Fuel Manufacturing Facility, a radiation alarm sounded, indicating the amount of radiation coming from the material was higher than expected and the work was stopped. However, the work was allowed to proceed without ensuring appropriate mitigation and notifications had been made. (NE-ID—BEA-FMF-2010-0001).
Sept. 17: While workers were preparing an experiment in the High Pressure Catalytic Reactor at the Bonneville County Technology Center, a carbon monoxide (CO) monitor alarmed at the evacuation level setpoint. Workers evacuated the facility until CO levels returned to safe levels. No workers were exposed to unsafe levels above the regulatory limit threshold. The system was placed in a secure state and work was stopped pending further evaluation. (NE-ID—BEA-INLLABS-2010-0002).
Sept. 21: While installing communications cables at the Willowcreek Building, a subcontract employee was exposed to a live electrical source. There was no injury and a work stoppage was initiated. (NE-ID—BEA-STC-2010-0003).
Sept. 22: During the annual suspect/counterfeit parts assessment at the Specific Manufacturing Capability project, a number of counterfeit parts were identified. All items were tagged out of service and will be properly dispositioned. (NE-ID—SMC-2010-0009).
Sept. 24: A suspect fastener was found as part of a kit for the Fuel Conditioning Facility Stack Monitoring Project. The suspect part was secured. (NE-ID—BEA-STC-2010-0004).
Sept. 27: A quality inspector discovered a number of suspect fasteners inside and outside an office building at the Advanced Test Reactor Complex. The facility manager later determined that the fasteners were not counterfeit items. (NE-ID—BEA-RTC-2010-0003).

Operations Summary

Educators Vince Wray (left) and Richard McIsaac work with INL researcher Hope Lee as part of INL’s teacher internship program.
Teaching Teachers: The Idaho National Laboratory brings in roughly a dozen teachers each year to intern at the lab through its Teaming Teachers with INL (TTI) and Pre-Service Teacher internship program (PST). The goal is to help educators master the subjects they’re teaching and studying while finding ways to spark their students’ interest in science.