“Under Work Processes, the document says contrary to the requirements, Triad failed to perform work consistent with the approved instructions, procedures or other appropriate needs.”
Plutonium Facility PF4 at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Photo Courtesy LANL
Jill Hruby, the Department of Energy Undersecretary for Nuclear Security and Administrator for the National Nuclear Security Administration has issued a preliminary notice of violation (PNOV) to Triad National Security, LLC citing five Severity Level II violations linked to four nuclear safety events between February and July 2021 at the Los Alamos National Laboratory Plutonium Facility PF4.
A DOE investigation into the facts and circumstances associated with the four events alleges multiple violations of DOE nuclear safety requirements by Triad National Security, LLC, the management and operations contractor for LANL. The events were summarized as follows:
On February 11, 2021, fissionable materials placed in an area contrary to the criticality safety posting exceeded criticality safety mass-control requirements.
On March 3, 2021, a glove breach released radioactive contamination resulting in skin contamination of three workers.
On March 31, 2021, an over-filled water bath resulted in flooding of a vault containing fissionable materials.
Lastly, on July 19, 2021, a water tank for the wet vacuum system in LANL’s PF4 overflowed into the negative pressure chilled cooling water (NPCCW) tank, which then flowed into the glovebox ventilation system that supplies multiple rooms and gloveboxes containing fissionable materials.