Underground safe havens to be installed at WIPP (November 2015)

CARLSBAD — As a part of improving safety at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, underground safe havens will be installed at the facility, a news release said.

“Each unit is equipped to house 20 people for at least 36 hours in the event of an emergency where workers may not be able to safely evacuate the mine,” the news release said.

According to the news release, eight of the underground safe havens or chambers were delivered and will be taken down into the underground to be installed before WIPP resumes waste disposal operations.

Each chamber is about 28 feet long and 8 feet wide and weighs about 19,000 pounds.

Each one contains a heating, ventilation and cooling system, as well as an oxygen delivery system, food, water, a chemical toilet, gas monitoring, lighting and seating.

“These units are being installed at WIPP as part of the overarching safety and emergency program enhancements associated with WIPP recovery efforts,” the news release said.

The safe havens at WIPP will provide life-saving shelter for underground workers in the event of an emergency. (Photo: Photo Courtesy of the Department of Energy)

Current-Argus Staff 11:47 a.m. MST November 25, 2015, As posted at http://www.currentargus.com/story/news/special-reports/wipp/2015/11/25/underground-safe-havens-installed-wipp/76371424/

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