Fire chief says Los Alamos lab is safe from wildfire
CNN iReporter Jason Halladay captured this image of flames in the hills above Los Alamos, New Mexico.
June 29th, 2011
09:36 AM ET

Fire chief says Los Alamos lab is safe from wildfire

The Los Alamos National Laboratory in the New Mexico town of the same name will be spared from a fire raging in the vicinity, the Los Alamos fire chief told CNN Wednesday.

"We feel very comfortable that material is secure," Chief Doug Tucker said.

Concerns were raised that the wildfire could put at risk waste or other toxic materials stored at the lab.

But Tucker said that the waste, which is stored in drums, are kept on a blacktop with no vegetation around and are safe from fire. In case the fire was to close in, firefighters were ready to use foam to ensure that nothing would be released into the environment, he said.

Wednesday's weather appeared favorable to their work fighting the blaze, he said.

The Los Alamos lab, near Sante Fe, New Mexico, will remain closed through at least Thursday, officials said.

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soundoff (8 Responses)
  1. michaelfury

    June 29, 2011 at 10:08 am | Report abuse |

    i fell totyally safe now... the fire chief knows and would never lie...

    June 29, 2011 at 10:16 am | Report abuse |
  3. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    I googled to be sure that El Nido Restaurant in Tesuque is OK.
    That's a landmark place in the history of both Los Alamos and Santa Fe, and I have a recurrent dream about going there...something about getting the table I want.

    June 29, 2011 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
  4. saywhat

    Not so fast @ RUFFNUT
    This morning a nuclear physicist on CNN warned that there are 50-55 thousand drums with plutonium containing waste . That under intense heat they can explode & spew material in the atmosphere which if ihaled even in micrograms can cause cancer & other damage.
    Besides there is nuclear weapons material onsite which is 'secured'.

    Lets hope & pray that the fire is contained.

    June 29, 2011 at 11:39 am | Report abuse |

    @saywhat... this might be a totally crazy idea... but go with me on this...

    say there is a flood... maybe we should put the radiactive waste and stuff up high..maybe on the roof then put a tarp over it.. or move it to a higher floor in the building...

    June 29, 2011 at 12:07 pm | Report abuse |

    if there is a threat of fire just thow dirt up there.. a 3-4 inch layer of dirt will protect it.. dirt wont burn... put a flame resistant tarp under the dirt..

    June 29, 2011 at 12:08 pm | Report abuse |
  7. edvhou812

    This "article" doesn't give any info. Those flames would need to jump canyons, travel two miles, cross pavement with very little brush, penetrate fire retardart, and then make the drums hot enough to burst to cause the disaster that so many fear.

    June 29, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Placitena

    I am grateful to the hundreds of firefighters, state staff, law enforcement officers, national personnel who are working on containing the fire at Los Alamos and around the state of New Mexico. I am quite disappointed in how the national and sometimes local media respond to this situation. CNN just did a piece that does a disservice to not only all the folks who are working so diligently to contain the fire and keep everyone safe, but to the national public who are looking for accurate information. Please CNN, report the news and the facts–not simply raise questions about what could go wrong. All you do is raise anxiety. That is not helpful, nor in my opinion, responsible. When my child is sick, I consult a doctor, make a decision about how to care for him and stay hopeful. I would not appreciate every person in my neighborhood reporting that my child could die or perhaps the doctor is incompetment or my child might not recover or might be scarred for life. Neither do I appreciate the media turning this challenging wildfire into a something that it is not–with all of your 'what if's.' Please report responsibly without editorializing. Please report the facts with a spirit of a 'glass half full.' Please stop asking stupid questions that serve no one but, quite frankly, your own ratings. LIsten to the Press Conferences that have occured in Los Alamos each day at noon. They are examples of professionalism and leadership.

    June 29, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Report abuse |