Workers at nuclear waste site receive safety recognition

Left to right, CB&I’s Duane Inman; L-242 members Jesse Todhunter, Scott Covington, and Dan Anderson; CB&I’s Lewis May; and L-242 members Joe Vander Meersch, David Derbyshire, and Luka Bender.

L-242 members work four years at Hanford without recordable injury

MEMBERS OF LOCAL 242 (Spokane, Wash.) working at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation near Richland, Wash., received recognition from signatory contractor Chicago Bridge & Iron (CB&I) recently for working four calendar years without a recordable injury.

L-242 BM-ST Mark Keffeler said about 20 members work at Hanford, constructing and installing process, storage, and containment vessels, melters, burial boxes, casks, and stainless steel liner plates. The members also perform maintenance and repair work on the Columbia Generating Station, a commercial nuclear power plant operating at the Hanford site.

Hanford is the largest nuclear waste site in the Western Hemisphere, with an estimated 53 million gallons of high-level radioactive waste. The site produced plutonium during WWII as part of the Manhattan Project and continued to produce the material through the Cold War for the U.S. nuclear arsenal.

Hanford was recently in the news after it was discovered that six old, single-wall storage tanks have been leaking radioactive material. Some of L-242’s early work at the site involved replacing single-wall storage tanks with double-wall tanks as well as building boilers and reactors.

In 2003 and 2004, CB&I also built four huge stainless steel tanks at the Hanford waste treatment plant.