Nuclear safety board discusses concerns with DOE

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By Tris DeRoma

An independent safety board has concerns that it may be blocked by a special order from the Department of Energy from inspecting nuclear sites overseen by the DOE. 

The board made its concerns known at a meeting Wednesday in Washington, D.C.

The board, called the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board is an independent agency created by Congress to inspect and report on DOE activities at its nuclear sites that include the Los Alamos National Laboratory.

The board organized the hearing. This was the second hearing of a series of three.

During the hearing, board members Daniel Santos, Joyce Connery, Jessie Roberson and board chairman Bruce Hamilton spent two and a half hours interviewing DOE officials about their concerns that the DOE was trying to limit the access of board inspectors to DOE nuclear sites. 

In his opening statement, Santos voiced his and the board’s concern that the DOE was attempting to limit access through a special order it issued last spring called Order 140.1.

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