LANL shuts down most operations in response to gas emergency

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Los Alamos National Laboratory will be closed Friday in response to the disruption of gas service in areas of New Mexico. Operations at the laboratory also will be curtailed over the weekend.

LANL is requesting that employees stay away from the laboratory during the closure, with the exception of mission-essential personnel, who will be contacted by their managers for direction.

LANL made the decision to close after considering a notification sent at 2:09 p.m. today stating that New Mexico Gas Company reports that areas of New Mexico are experiencing service disruption and many homes and businesses are without natural gas service.

Affected areas in Northern New Mexico currently include Española (approximately 2,600 customers), Taos, Questa, and Red River (approximately 10,800 customers), Santa Clara Pueblo, Okway Owingeh Pueblo, and portions of San Ildefonso Pueblo.

The gas company encourages residents to "remain in their homes if they can and if they have safe alternative sources of heat to keep warm, such as electric heaters, wood or pellet stoves and electric blankets." Emergency shelters have been established at various locations for residents unable to safely remain at home. Affected employees should check the New Mexico Gas Company website at http://www.nmgco.com/emergency_updates.aspx for the latest updates on the situation, including shelter locations.

Residents are cautioned not to use unvented heaters, grills, propane or kerosene heaters, or camp stoves inside their homes or enclosed spaces, as these can result in carbon monoxide poisoning.