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  1. #1
    Thailand Expat misskit's Avatar
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    Nuclear Waste Tunnel Collapses in Washington State



    Hundreds of workers at a nuclear site in the western U.S. state of Washington were ordered to take cover Tuesday after part of an underground tunnel containing rail cars full of radioactive waste collapsed.

    Officials detected no release of radiation at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation and no workers were injured, said Randy Bradbury, a spokesman for the Washington state Department of Ecology.

    The cause of the collapse was not immediately known. No workers were inside the tunnel when it collapsed, causing soil on the surface above to sink up to 1.2 meters over 37.1 square meters area, officials said.

    "All employees have been accounted for; there were no injuries and there is no indication of a spread of radiological contamination," said Destry Henderson, a spokesman for the Hanford Emergency Center.

    The Hanford nuclear site was used to produce plutonium for the bomb that brought an end to World War II. Its last reactor closed down in 1987 but millions of liters of leftover waste are contained in tanks at the site.

    The collapse was discovered during a routine inspection and occurred during a massive cleanup that has been under way since the 1980s and costs more than $2 billion a year. The work is expected to take until 2060 and cost more than $100 billion.

    The Hanford Site suffered a leak in a massive nuclear waste storage tank in 2016 that was described as "catastrophic" by a former employee.

    The U.S. Department of Energy downplayed the incident at the time saying the leak had been "anticipated" amid ongoing efforts to empty the tank.

    Nuclear Waste Tunnel Collapses in Washington State

  2. #2
    Elite Mumbler
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    ^
    That place is close enough to me that I actually checked the wind direction when I heard about it.

  3. #3
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    It's a mess over there and I hope that Drumpf is not planning to cut the cleanup budget they way he did with the EPA.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pickel View Post
    ^
    That place is close enough to me that I actually checked the wind direction when I heard about it.
    You're in Eastern WA? Cool.

    Love that parts of WA, but I was a coastie.


    I read an article yesterday that stated that area is the most polluted place (Hanford) in the Western Hemisphere.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cold Pizza View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by pickel View Post
    ^
    That place is close enough to me that I actually checked the wind direction when I heard about it.
    You're in Eastern WA? Cool.

    Love that parts of WA, but I was a coastie.


    I read an article yesterday that stated that area is the most polluted place (Hanford) in the Western Hemisphere.
    I'm in Canada, about 250 km away from it. Considering how toxic that place is and the potential for the disaster it could possibly create, that's close enough to check the wind direction IMO.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by pickel
    Considering how toxic that place is and the potential for the disaster it could possibly create, that's close enough to check the wind direction IMO.
    And the US as I recall was still storing more nuclear waste there. That's where the sub reactors were sent after being removed during scrapping.

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    Head Skivvie Stacker Storekeeper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CSFFan View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by pickel
    Considering how toxic that place is and the potential for the disaster it could possibly create, that's close enough to check the wind direction IMO.
    And the US as I recall was still storing more nuclear waste there. That's where the sub reactors were sent after being removed during scrapping.
    USS Enterprise reactor work up in air

    "The Navy has decided to store the USS Enterprise until experts can thoroughly analyze how to best dismantle its eight de-fueled reactor plants.Puget Sound Naval Shipyard is the only U.S. shipyard that recycles nuclear-powered ships. Since 1984, it has completed 129 submarine and cruiser reactor compartment packages and shipped them to Hanford Nuclear Reservation for burial. The Enterprise, commissioned in 1961, is the world's first nuclear-powered carrier.

    The ship was deactivated in 2012 at Virginia's Norfolk Naval Station and towed across the harbor to Newport News Shipbuilding to de-fuel the reactors. The work should be completed in August, after which the Navy had planned to tow the Enterprise around South America to Bremerton for the final recycling.

    With PSNS facing a large workload maintaining the active fleet, the Navy began exploring whether private industry could recycle the reactor compartments, which still bear some radioactivity. In August, it requested proposals for the work.

    On Dec. 19, 20 members of Congress including Rep. Derek Kilmer, D-Gig Harbor, and U.S. Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell, sent a letter to former Navy Secretary Ray Mabus, raising concerns about the private sector disposing of reactor compartments and asking him to reconsider.

    Director of Naval Reactors Adm.James F. Caldwell Jr. replied Friday. The request for proposals has been canceled, he wrote. The Enterprise will be placed in storage at a site to be determined until the path to dispose of its reactor compartments is selected. It will come from three alternatives: PSNS, a private shipyard or placing the ship in intermediate-range storage and deferring the decision until later. An environmental review will be performed to evaluate the alternatives.

    Caldwell, a former commander of Submarine Group 9 at Bangor, said the Navy considering private companies isn't a slap at PSNS; it's just the opposite.

    "My desire to support PSNS & IMS and the operational fleet is precisely why the Navy has been exploring the alternative of full-ship commercial disposal of ex-CVN 65, including the reactor plants," he wrote.

    The Navy's four shipyards are challenged to execute their main mission of maintaining the active fleet. As demand for ships to fighting wars and patrolling seas increases, so does the workload.
    "PSNS & IMF is challenged to execute their current and projected workload with their current manning level and existing facilities," Caldwell wrote. "In the meantime, the eight de-fueled nuclear reactor plants onboard ex-CVN 65 represent a level of work that is an order of magnitude larger than any previous nuclear-powered warship disposal effort. While the Navy will fulfill its responsibility to safely and effectively dispose of ex-CVN 65, I must carefully take into consideration the impact my recommendation has on the operational fleet."

    The Navy will choose an approach that can be technically executed, is environmentally responsible and a sensible use of resources, Caldwell said.

    Kilmer said he was standing up for local jobs.

    "Puget Sound Naval Shipyard has a long and successful record of doing this work, and our nation must invest in our region to continue that tradition," he said. "I will continue to work with our senators and local workers to protect our economy and national security.”

    The Enterprise is the only ship of its class. It served during the Cuban Missile Crisis, through the Vietnam War and made its 24th and final deployment in 2011, launching 1,450 air strikes into Afghanistan.

    The next aircraft carrier in line to retire is Bremerton-based USS Nimitz, the first of 10 ships in its class. It is 42 years old. Its service life is about 50 years. Nimitz-class carriers are powered by two large nuclear reactors instead of eight small ones".

  8. #8
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    SK, thanks for the article and info.

    Pickel, thanks for the clarification. We were neighbors. (I have relatives in Vancouver and Victoria.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by pickel
    I'm in Canada, about 250 km away from it.
    So do you hang out with Baitongboy?

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    Hanford was a very scenic high prairie on the banks of the mighty Columbia River.
    I guess when the salmon are glowing radioactive folks will know something went awry.
    Surely Storekeeper's daughter will call Dad as Wazzu Cougar Country Pullman is not so far away with the prevailing wind at Hanford blowing from the west.

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    Head Skivvie Stacker Storekeeper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeeCoffee View Post
    Hanford was a very scenic high prairie on the banks of the mighty Columbia River.
    I guess when the salmon are glowing radioactive folks will know something went awry.
    Surely Storekeeper's daughter will call Dad as Wazzu Cougar Country Pullman is not so far away with the prevailing wind at Hanford blowing from the west.
    Mark Few, the basketball coach at Gonzaga, is an avid fisherman. Maybe he's discovered some magic, radioactive elixir that helped get his Zags to the NCAA finals.

  12. #12
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    If only it was that easy then the M's could/ should/ would. ;-)

    Edit: then
    Last edited by PeeCoffee; 11-05-2017 at 07:42 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by PeeCoffee View Post
    If only it was that easy than the M's could/ should/ would. ;-)
    PC, do you follow the M's?

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    When I resided in the Emerald City I was a keen "game goer" in the 90's when shitty Ranier beer was on tap.
    The most amazing thing about the old stadium that the city later imploded was Rick K, "The Peanut Guy" (possibly Kaminsky), a truly amazing and talented vendor.
    Those were the days of Niehouse up in the booth with Griffey in CF, Buhner in RF, Edgar actually on the field before being delegated a DH, Moo-keee Wilson and Dan behind the plate, Omar at SS and Joey Cora at second.
    1995 was Alex Rodriquez rookie season at SS with Numero Uno lefty Randy Johnson (and maturing ace Jamie Moyer somewhere in the late 90's) subduing the Angels in a one game playoff for the AL West. They went on to beat the heavily favoured Yankees in a five game playoff after dropping the first two. "MY oh My!"
    After that season Seattle and the State appropriated funds for the new beautiful boutique stadiums (plural).

    And who can forget my favourite anger-management manager ,Sweet Lou Pinella, who actually threw bases into the outfield to strongly voice his opinion knowing the ump would give him an automatic ejection to the total elation of the M's fans booing the umps and screaming , "Lou! Lou! Lou!"

    This was well before micro-brews and sushi vendors and legalized marijuana.
    The Refuse To Lose Mariners at that time played inside the Kingdome - the loudest, rowdiest indoor stadium in MLB.

    Ichiro would bring untold talent, professionalism and joy to Seattle in 2001 and the grounds crew were happy not to have to clean up right field , Buhner's former private tobacco chew 'spitoon'.

    Memories all good.
    Last edited by PeeCoffee; 11-05-2017 at 08:47 PM.

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    To answer your question...I follow a tad but it has lost any significant meaning.

    Gary 'Green River' Ridgway probably has more time on his hands to follow the M's from Walla Walla.

    (Some memories of the 90's Seattle not so good.)

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by bsnub View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by pickel
    I'm in Canada, about 250 km away from it.
    So do you hang out with Baitongboy?
    Why the hell would I ever want to do that.

  17. #17
    Days Work Done! Norton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pickel
    I'm in Canada, about 250 km away from it.
    You should have stayed in Manitoba. Safe from nuk waste there. Beware the large furry white bears though.

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    Americas Chernobyl happening under Trumps watch.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Norton View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by pickel
    I'm in Canada, about 250 km away from it.
    You should have stayed in Manitoba. Safe from nuk waste there. Beware the large furry white bears though.
    Never lived in Manitoba Norton, I'm a Sask boy just like you.

    I've never seen a furry white bear either, but have had more than my share of encounters with black ones and grizzlies.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by pickel View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by bsnub View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by pickel
    I'm in Canada, about 250 km away from it.
    So do you hang out with Baitongboy?
    Why the hell would I ever want to do that.


    He lives in the Okanagan.

  21. #21
    Head Skivvie Stacker Storekeeper's Avatar
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    Hmmm ... way more Canadian coonts in the forum than I realized.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Storekeeper
    Hmmm ... way more Canadian coonts in the forum than I realized.
    Canada...America's hat.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Storekeeper
    Canadian coonts i
    You mean hosers.

  24. #24
    Days Work Done! Norton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pickel
    Never lived in Manitoba Norton, I'm a Sask boy just like you.
    Oops. I forgot.

    North Battleford was it?

  25. #25
    Days Work Done! Norton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Storekeeper
    way more Canadian coonts in the forum than I realized.
    Stealthy we be.

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