On February 14, 2014, an incident in the underground repository at the Department of Energy Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) resulted in the release of plutonium and americium from one or more transuranic waste containers into the environment. Because access to the underground was restricted following the event, the decision was made to divide the Accident Investigation into two phases. Phase 1 focused on the radiological release to the atmosphere and the WIPP response to the resulting alarms, based on information available with access to the underground. Phase 2 was initiated after limited access to the underground was re-established and focused on the mechanism of release from the transuranic waste containers, waste treatment, sampling, forensics, and programmatic issues.
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