Feeds

Homer Simpson let loose on US nuclear weapons facility

OK, hand me that drill.... Doh!

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

Homer Simpson has apparently relinquished his post at Springfield nuclear plant to take up a new position with US Energy Department's Pantex plant in Texas.

Our suspicions are aroused because the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board has reported that workers at the Amarillo complex nearly totalled the Lone Star State twice while dismantling old nuclear warheads.

In the first incident, highly-skilled operatives inadvertently drilled into the warhead's core, provoking a full-scale evacuation of Pantex. They later made a second Chernobylesque blunder by bodging a highly-explosive warhead part back together with tape.

Had they subsequently dropped the component, the likely outcome would have been a "violent reaction", with "potentially unacceptable consequences", as safety board chairman John T. Conway rather conservatively put it.

Pantex is operated by BWX Technologies Inc. The facility's website assures visitors that BWXT Pantex is "Maintaining the safety, security and reliability of America's nuclear weapons stockpile" through "Teamwork that delivers... Results!".

Presumably the ... represents the slight delay between the team dropping the warhead and then delivery of the Results! in the form of Texas reduced to an irradiated wilderness for 10,000 years.

There is, mercifully, some hope that that Texans will not in future be obliged to check their steak and fries with a Geiger Counter since the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board has an inspector permanently stationed at Pantex. We're certain he's ensuring they buck up their ideas; but if he should turn out to be Sideshow Bob, here is BWXT's cut-out-and-keep guide to what you should do once the sirens sound, entitled "WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE ADVISED TO TAKE SHELTER" and culled from Pantex's entertaining Managing Emergency Events:

WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE ADVISED TO TAKE SHELTER

To protect yourself, you need to avoid physical contact with radioactive materials and avoid inhaling them:

Stay indoors in your home, work place, or a nearby building. Once inside, do not leave unless you are told it is safe to go out or you are advised by your emergency management officials or law enforcement personnel to evacuate.

Close all windows, doors, and fireplace dampers. This keeps outside air from entering your home or work place.

Turn off any heating or cooling system that draws in air from the outside. If it becomes stuffy, use portable or ceiling fans to circulate the air inside.

If you have been outside during the period just before you were warned to take shelter, take a shower or at least wash your face and hands with a washcloth using soap and tepid water. Change into clean clothes; put the clothing you were wearing and the washcloth into a plastic bag.

Keep your radio on and tuned to one of the local EBS stations- KGNC-AM (710) or KGNC-FM (97.9). Listen for information and instructions

Begin to assemble items you may need in case you are advised to evacuate.

If you must go outdoors, cover your nose and mouth with a damp cloth to avoid inhaling any radioactive materials that might be present.



Top advice. On the other hand, you could just join Homer down at Moe's, rack up a few beers, and wait for your skin to fall off. ®

Reducing security risks from open source software

More from The Register

next story
Carlos: Slim your working week to just three days of toil
'Midas World' vision suggests you retire later, watch more tellie and buy more stuff
Motorist 'thought car had caught fire' as Adele track came on stereo
'FIRE' caption on dashboard prompts dunderheaded hard shoulder halt
Brit Rockall adventurer poised to quit islet
Occupation records broken, champagne corks popped
Accused! Yahoo! exec! SUES! her! accuser!, says! sex! harassment! never! happened!
Allegations were for 'financial gain', countersuit claims
Yahoo! Japan! launches! service! for! the! dead!
If you're reading this email, I am no longer alive
Plucky Rockall podule man back on (proper) dry land
Bold, barmy Brit adventurer Nick Hancock escapes North Atlantic islet
NSA man: 'Tell me about your Turkish connections'
Spooks ask Dabbsy to suggest a nice hotel with pool
Japanese artist cuffed for disseminating 3D ladyparts files
Printable genitalia fall foul of 'obscene material' laws
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.