8:41am

Fri June 27, 2014
Local and State News

Nuke Leak Probe Focuses On Los Alamos National Lab

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A state regulator says officials investigating a radiation leak from the government's underground nuclear waste dump in southeastern New Mexico have turned their focus to Los Alamos National Laboratory.

New Mexico Environment Department General Counsel Jeff Kendall said Thursday that the Department of Energy's accident investigation team has been at the lab in northeastern New Mexico for about three weeks.

Kendall said that probe is one of just nine underway into what caused a barrel of toxic waste from Los Alamos to burst at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in southeastern New Mexico, contaminating 22 workers and shuttering the nation's only permanent repository for waste from nuclear bomb building.

Kendall made the comments during a New Mexico Court of Appeals hearing on a dispute with a watchdog group over the permitting process for WIPP.