March 23, 1997 in City

Nuclear Fuel Rods Found Stored Improperly

Associated Press

Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory officials have discovered eight nuclear fuel rods stored improperly at the Test Reactor Area.

The rods, about 37 inches long and 1 inch in diameter, contain zirconium hydride and graphite, moderating materials not intended for the type of storage facility in which they were found, INEEL contractor Lockheed Martin Idaho Technologies Co. said Friday.

That puts the storage in violation of environmental regulations.

The company is planning to retrieve the fuel, move it to appropriate storage, and develop safeguards against similar violations.

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