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Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Improper LANL shipment involved Plutonium

Improper LANL shipment involved Plutonium

http://www.exchangemonitor.com/publication/morning-briefing/erroneous-lanl-shipment-involved-plutonium/

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

All shipments are on hold; no shipping of anything. The Lab Director is holding a live video message to all employees at 1:30pm.

More to come...

Anonymous said...

First time in history of AEC-ERDA-DP-DOE-NNSA that a contractor has managed to have such a poor track record. Time for Charlie to take his PADs and ADs and hit the road.

Anonymous said...

"The Department of Energy’s semiautonomous National Nuclear Security Administration said Friday that Los Alamos had during the previous week sent small amounts of an unidentified special nuclear material via air cargo to the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California..."

Anonymous said...

We can guess what that small amount was for, and soon that will make the news in the bay area, too.

Anonymous said...

Ok folks this one is pretty crazy, I mean really crazy, how on earth do you send this stuff on a plane to 2 locations? Lets get a few things out of the way, this not due to arrogant cowboy scientists. If I was to make a guess this sounds like the brought in non experts from the outside who have no experience with a place like LANL but hey we come from "Industry" and LANL is for profit so you ship stuff by airmail to meet profit deadlines because money is at stake and money does not sleep. I would guess this will be another don't consult scientists because they do "get it" but management gets it and it must be shipped so ship it. It will be another WIPP like situation.

Come one some manager has to behind this, how on earth do you pull something like this off. Of course LANS has been on the hire anybody and everyone like crazy thing so who knows. But hey LANS is one they way out they may have wanted to get one last big bonus year before the the ship sinks but they cut too many corners at the last second to meet every deadline, so bye bye our 90 mill 2017 fee...Daaammmm.

Anonymous said...

I wonder if the Fed Ex plane carrying LANL's "small amount" of radioactive nuclide(s) on the way to LLNL flew over San Francisco, California, population 800,000 on the way into SFO International Airport. Nice.

Anonymous said...

All shipments are on hold; no shipping of anything. The Lab Director is holding a live video message to all employees at 1:30pm.

More to come...

June 27, 2017 at 11:46 AM

Of all the FUBARS that Charlie reviewed he forgot to mention the $10M package that was recently dropped and destroyed when inadequate lifts were used and the package toppled to ground.

Anonymous said...

"The Lab Director is holding a live video message to all employees at 1:30pm."

Did the live video message have any value added?

Anonymous said...

When there were some mistakes in AF shipments of nuc materials on Gates watch, he fired a couple dozen responsible individuals, including the SecAF. Wonder if Perry has the same stiff in his spine?

Anonymous said...

I wonder if the Fed Ex plane carrying LANL's "small amount" of radioactive nuclide(s) on the way to LLNL flew over San Francisco, California, population 800,000 on the way into SFO International Airport. Nice.

June 27, 2017 at 4:38 PM

The pilots got more radiation exposure from the flight at altitude than anyone got from the "nuclear material." What a joke.

Anonymous said...

The pilots got more radiation exposure from the flight at altitude than anyone got from the "nuclear material." What a joke.

June 27, 2017 at 6:08 PM

Not if the plane crashed into downtown San Francisco. That's why the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR 71) explicitly prohibits the transport of nuclear materials ( expect under very limited conditions), not to mention the container used was not an approved container for air shipment, likely a Type A container. Type B containers are required for air shipments. And if you question the likelihood of such a scenario, why is LANLs Pu (PF-4) facility designed to survive the ~10,000 year unlikely earthquake? By the way, do we know the amount of nuclear materials that were transported? Incidentally, to expose the Fed Ex pilots without their prior knowledge, to an unknown amount of radiation, is not acceptable. Also, read 10CFR71.8 Deliberate Misconduct.

Anonymous said...

Did LLNS receive official "advanced notification" from LANS specifying all details of the nuclear materials to be shipped to LLNL, including transport details, days before said nuclear materials departed LANL?

Anonymous said...

Not if the plane crashed into downtown San Francisco.

June 28, 2017 at 2:48 AM

You're right. That would have been a much preferable outcome. Imagine the number of left-coast crazies we would have been rid of in that case!

Anonymous said...

Even better to crash into downtown San Francisco carrying a full Hiroshima-type bomb.

Anonymous said...

"An investigation is being conducted to determine the root cause of this incident, as well as procedures to avoid future incidents of this type. Upon completion of the investigation, NNSA will use the full terms and conditions of the contract to ensure that any responsible parties are held accountable."

Do the "full terms and conditions" include firing leadership, reduction of salary, no bonus money this year, or just an "all hands" meeting on video tape requirement?

Anonymous said...

What's most difficult for LANL in this mess is that it was a federal law that was broken, not just some DOE regulations or NNSA policy. For those interested in such differences, that moves it from civil to criminal status.

Anonymous said...

Do the "full terms and conditions" include firing leadership, reduction of salary, no bonus money this year, or just an "all hands" meeting on video tape requirement?

June 29, 2017 at 8:02 AM

You could actually read the contract if you really wanted to know. But you don't. You just want to vent.

Anonymous said...


"You could actually read the contract if you really wanted to know. But you don't. You just want to vent."

Seems like your venting, and the question is reasonable given the LANS track record. There are no prerequisites to blog questions, but there are always guard dog criticisms like yours. You are trying to protect a sinking ship, but you know that. Maybe you'll get that LANS bonus after all, no matter what critical mistakes are made, people injured, or property damaged.

Anonymous said...

LANL has a cesspool culture through and through on the operations side (management and workers). They literally do not care because they believe nothing with happen because nothing ever has. Contractors will change and they will continue on....

Anonymous said...



What's most difficult for LANL in this mess is that it was a federal law that was broken, not just some DOE regulations or NNSA policy. For those interested in such differences, that moves it from civil to criminal status.

June 29, 2017 at 1:37 PM


If this is true, that indeed does put the whole situation in a different category.

Anonymous said...

"LANL has a cesspool culture through and through on the operations side (management and workers). They literally do not care because they believe nothing with happen because nothing ever has. Contractors will change and they will continue on....

June 29, 2017 at 9:46 PM"

Sounds a bit like overreach to me. As for the whole culture thing one should have some idea what it means and if the concept of culture has any actually meaning when describing business or working environments. It seems like a term that just gets thrown out as a way to avoid actual analysis or conversations. Additionally when it is used it always seem to be an agenda driven issue. You can use it to diss or dismiss anything.

For example: The whole college culture is utterly leftists, lazy and corrupt. The culture of Austin Texas is toxic poison and rotten. The culture of
of hobbyists is that of a total cesspool. Automobile driving has created a culture
of narcissism and hatred. The internet culture is that of jingoism and apathy. You get the point that these statements are so sweeping that they are utterly useless and the same can be said much of time that anyone uses the word "culture" that is why it is hard to take the term seriously since when one things about it has no actual value. Of course bs it is a two edged sword. I can say that we now have enough troll posters on this blog that we can determine with absolute certainty that there is a cesspool culture of bitterness and denial pushed by mediocre ex-employees with an axe to grind that everyone hated when the worked at the lab.

Anonymous said...

Of all the FUBARS that Charlie reviewed he forgot to mention the $10M package that was recently dropped and destroyed when inadequate lifts were used and the package toppled to ground.

June 27, 2017 at 4:42 PM

The PADNW confirmed this yesterday, it was an HVAC system. Stated they used 2 straps instead of the required 4. Fortunately, no one was standing under it. Another $10M down the LANS drain.

Anonymous said...

"Of course bs it is a two edged sword. I can say that we now have enough troll posters on this blog that we can determine with absolute certainty that there is a cesspool culture of bitterness and denial pushed by mediocre ex-employees with an axe to grind that everyone hated when the worked at the lab."

or current employees....

Anonymous said...


"or current employees....

July 1, 2017 at 4:21 AM"

Nope, it is a couple of specific ex employees who are ex for a reason if you know what a I mean.

Anonymous said...

Current LANS management is doing a good job of creating bad press and low performance scores. It's unlikely ex employees have such
an influence on LANS daily operations, if you know what I mean.

Anonymous said...

Don't worry. crack LANS upper management saw to it that these boxes filled with plutonium were labeled "Fragile" and "Do Not Drop!"

Anonymous said...

Charlie "GQ" McMillan only makes a little over $2 million per year in salary overseeing the management of LANL. It's barely enough to cover the cost of a gentleman's wardrobe filled with fine Italian silk suits and $500 Hermes leather belts. Perhaps if it was raised to something like $5 million per year he could do a much, much better job.

Anonymous said...

LANL is incapable of managing nuclear materials. Plenty of examples. This is just another.

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