Beatty, Nevada: Waste Dump Explosion
UPDATE: December 19, 2015.
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Sandia MWL >> Regulatory >> NMED >> Corrective Action Complete Hearings.
Citizen Action and our expert witness and contributor: Dr. Eric Nuttall, testified water interacting with metallic sodium in the MWL can produce fire and explosions. Sandia countered with expert rebuttal testimony (on the record) explaining why this was not chemically possible.
The Las Vegas Sun and AP reported on November 27, regarding the fire at Beatty Nevada dump:
(Nevada Fire Marshal Peter) Mulvihill said this week that unusually heavy rains that washed out roads and damaged historic structures in nearby Death Valley National Park puddled and drained through cracks in the trench cover mound. The water exploded when it contacted metallic sodium that had been buried in drums filled with oil.
Storage in the MWL is similar: much of the toxic waste is stored in decaying metal drums and plastic containers.
The above video is of a low level nuclear waste dump explosion and fire at Beatty Nevada that occurred October 19, 2015. The dump is very similar to the Mixed Waste Landfill at Sandia National Laboratories.
Disposal sheets and SNL memoranda for the MWL show it contains metallic sodium in combination with high level nuclear waste from nuclear reactor meltdown tests, atomic bomb test experiment materials and nuclear rocket testing. Two uranium fires have already occurred at the MWL.
A recent hearing officer report for the MWL for corrective action complete entirely ignores the presence of high level nuclear waste in the MWL and the potential for fires and explosions. The report ignores citizen concerns for the long-term dangers for the community that are only too possible as shown in the video.
As shown by the video, dirt covers do not protect against these kind of mixed wastes. Also ignored is the fact that the MWL lies above Albuquerque's drinking water aquifer that is already severely contaminated from plumes of thylene Dibromide, Nitrate, Trichlorethylene, and petroleum hydrocarbons from a jet fuel spill at Kirtland AFB. It is time for the New Mexico Environment Department, Department of Energy and Sandia Labs to protect the public from the illegally disposed high level nuclear mixed waste at the MWL by excavation and safe storage.
Please add the video and this letter to the file for the MWL Audit.
Executive Director Citizen Action New Mexico