National Nuclear Security Administration
March 18, 2004
The Honorable John T. Conway
Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board
625 Indiana Avenue, NW.
Washington, D.C. 20004
Dear Mr. Chairman:
Enclosed is the Los Alamos Site Office (LASO) response to the concerns raised in your August 19, 2003, and November 5, 2003, letters related to the lightning protection system at the Weapons Engineering Tritium Facility (WETF) and the safety classification of the electrical distribution system at the Chemistry and Metallurgy Research facility (CMR).†
The enclosed response includes the National Nuclear Security Administrationís (NNSA) approach and LASO directive to the Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) concerning the safety issues at these facilities.
In summary, LASO has directed LANL to conduct a thorough review of the electrical distribution system at CMR as part of the basis for interim operations upgrade for the facility by April 30, 2004. †With regard to WETF, several safety measures are being pursued as outlined in the enclosed LASO response, including upgrade of the fire barriers around the storage room, aggressive packaging of the material-at-risk in approved containers, as well as re-evaluation of hazard analysis and accident analysis scenarios in the update to the WETF documented safety analysis.
We will continue to track progress on these items and will provide periodic updates to your staff. †If you have any questions, please contact me or have your staff contact Sujita Pierpoint at (301) 903-9601 or Gerald Schlapper at (505) 665-7111.
Everet H. Beckner
† for Defense Programs
M. Whitaker, DR-1
R. Erickson, LASO