Saturday, February 12, 2005

Graceland?

From Anonymous:

Don Brown seems to be claiming that there are (at least) 23 "warehouses" at LANL containing "nuclear supplies" that are not accounted for in a formal "chain of custody." I suspect (hope) that this is not the case and that there is a rational explanation. At least, I hope that these materials are not used in critical applications that require a degree of quality control. But, after the secret sequestering of a few $100k of "camping materials" on Lab property, what else might be there without the knowledge of most workers? Can anyone shed light on this issue? Is this just an "obvious" miss-interpretation by someone not familiar with the Laboratory?

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lamonitor.com
The Online News Source for Los Alamos
Friday, February 11, 2005
Last modified Thursday, February 10, 2005 2:56 PM MST

Whistleblower claims quality assurance failures

ROGER SNODGRASS, roger@lamonitor.com, Monitor Assistant Editor
A quality assurance auditor for a Los Alamos contractor has come forward as a whistleblower, claiming that he has been punished for discovering and documenting a dangerous breakdown in quality assurance programs at LANL.

Don Brown was hired in May 2003.

According to documents he has distributed through an independent government watchdog group, including a formal complaint to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Brown charges that LANL's nuclear facilities are too unsafe to operate and that it's modern pit production process has been compromised.

In a recent interview on CBS Evening News, Brown said, "I started finding problems that would stop any other nuclear facility in their tracks."

He said he found as many as 1,000 faulty welds in one nuclear building.
"It looks like it was welded with a Hershey Bar," he said.

Contacted in Los Alamos, Brown referred questions to his lawyer, Tom Carpenter of the Government Accountability Project (GAP).

Speaking by telephone from Seattle, Carpenter said Brown had approached GAP last spring, and was advised to go through normal procedures, and then if he wasn't getting anywhere, to escalate his concerns.

The response was a stone wall, barely an acknowledgement, and then he was informed that his job was being reorganized and that he would have to apply to keep it. He was not selected for an interview, and has been told that he is expected to resign, GAP said.

Among his findings was the existence of a score of warehouses, which Brown claims are "off the books." These warehouses are full of equipment and supplies and are known as "Graceland." The warehouses are said to contain material without bar-codes and serve as a supply depot for nuclear operations at the lab.

Carpenter said that procurement formalities for nuclear supplies requires very explicit acceptance, inspection and certification. A formal chain of custody procedure provides assurance that the pedigree is known.

"When it comes time to put it in, you know the pedigree," Carpenter said. "None of it is in place. Graceland is one area, 23 warehouses with supplies that don't exist."

GAP has written to new Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman calling for a full investigation of the matter under the Price-Anderson laws.

LANL public affairs had not responded to a request for information by today's publication deadline.

Comments:
Graceland is a series of some "tuff sheds" out at TA-16 that house materials needed to keep a site like that running. No nuclear materials (unless someone has snuck them in unbeknownst to the people who use these sheds). It's general building maintenance stuff.
 
"Tuff Sheds" don't go on the books as buildings. The people who put them at TA-16 tried to get them on the books, but the rules are that sheds like that aren't carried as buildings. No cover up here, just someone trying to make sensational news.
 
No way Dude! That's where the aliens and their spacecraft are hidden...
 
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