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Event Notification Report for December 4, 2008

U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Operations Center

Event Reports For
12/03/2008 - 12/04/2008

** EVENT NUMBERS **


44687 44690 44692

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General Information or Other Event Number: 44687
Rep Org: MARYLAND DEPT OF THE ENVIRONMENT
Licensee: ENGINEERING CONSTRUCTION SERVICES
Region: 1
City: HANOVER State: MD
County:
License #: 03-09201
Agreement: Y
Docket:
NRC Notified By: RAY MANLEY
HQ OPS Officer: BILL HUFFMAN
Notification Date: 11/28/2008
Notification Time: 14:56 [ET]
Event Date: 11/28/2008
Event Time: 10:15 [EST]
Last Update Date: 11/28/2008
Emergency Class: NON EMERGENCY
10 CFR Section:
AGREEMENT STATE
Person (Organization):
LAWRENCE DOERFLEIN (R1)
LARRY CAMPER (FSME)

Event Text

AGREEMENT STATE - MARYLAND - DAMAGED TROXLER NUCLEAR DENSITY GAUGE

A representative for the state of Maryland Radiological Health Program reported that a Troxler nuclear density gauge was damaged when run over by construction equipment. The gauge, a Troxler 3430 (8 mCi Cs-137 and 40 mCi Am-241/Be; S/N 39041) was left unattended and was inadvertently run over by a large roller. The licensee secured the scene of the incident and contacted the state of Maryland. The state inspector found that the gauge had been extensively damaged with the source rod exposed. The state called in a Radiological Service Organization (RSO) contractor to assist in the source rod recovery. The source was successfully retrieved and placed into a shielded container and taken to the RSO's facility for ultimate disposal. There was no indication of breach of the sources or contamination as a result of this event. The state plans to follow-up with the licensee regarding failure to maintaining control over the Troxler while in use.

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General Information or Other Event Number: 44690
Rep Org: OHIO BUREAU OF RADIATION PROTECTION
Licensee: UNKNOWN
Region: 3
City: HARRISON State: OH
County:
License #:
Agreement: Y
Docket:
NRC Notified By: STEVE HELMER
HQ OPS Officer: DONALD NORWOOD
Notification Date: 12/01/2008
Notification Time: 12:18 [ET]
Event Date: 11/22/2008
Event Time: 14:00 [EST]
Last Update Date: 12/01/2008
Emergency Class: NON EMERGENCY
10 CFR Section:
AGREEMENT STATE
Person (Organization):
MICHAEL KUNOWSKI (R3)
M. BURGESS (FSME)

Event Text

AGREEMENT STATE REPORT - RADIUM VIALS DISCOVERED IN HOME

"The Bureau of Radiation Protection (BRP) received a call through our 24-hour answering service, at 2:00 PM on Saturday, November 22, 2008. The caller, from Harrison, Ohio indicated that she purchased birth stones from an internet auction house a couple of weeks ago. However, it wasn't until Friday evening, November 21, 2008 that she opened a plastic drawer (part of what was purchase) and found 3 vials indicating radium. The caller then proceeded to do some research of radium on the internet and decided to call ODH the next day. She indicated the vials have been isolated and will not be touched until BRP staff can assess the radiological hazard (if any.) BRP indicated that we would like to send a health physicist to her house in the next couple of hours to survey the vials, her home, and assess her exposure.

"Health Physicist 3, Eric Denison was contacted. He picked up the response vehicle and survey equipment. He arrived at the caller's home ([Deleted], Harrison, Ohio 45030) at approximately 7:00 PM.

"Survey results showed no radioactive contamination on the caller and none found on her clothes, in her bathroom, and none found in other areas where there would have been the possibility/expectation of radioactive contamination. The HP3 indicated that the 1" reading on the side of the vials located in the garage indicates 15mR/hr.

"It appears from the surveys there is not a spread of radioactive contamination that had us concerned from the onset of the first phone call. The impact appears to be minimal and limited to the radium vials. The 3 radium vials are to be isolated, locked in a tool box in the garage, until an appropriate disposal can be arranged. The HP 3 finished remaining surveys and provided the caller a summary of what he has found, including bureau contact information.

"Attached are two pictures from our response to the radium discovery. The first gives an idea of the size of the vials as compared to the metal case and the nitrile glove under the case. The second gives a closer view of the third vial. The case is approximately 7 inches long and perhaps 2.5 inches wide. I apologize for not getting a ruler or coin into the pictures for size comparison.

"The label on the first vial is almost completely gone, and the label on the second is partially gone. The label on the third is almost intact. I did not notice any writings or markings other than the printing, but did not take time to examine them closely. The labels read: 'Radium - Chimie', 'Teufen - App.', 'Qual. No.', 'Nuance'.

"When presented by the owner, the vials were contained in the metal watch case shown in the photos. Dose rate as measured with a Bicron MicroRem was approximately 15 mRem/hr at a distance of 1 inch from the top center of the case. Smear wipes showed no removable contamination on the exterior of the case. On opening the case, HP3 found the vials wrapped loosely in a plastic zipper bag (but not inside the bag). HP3 removed the vials and arranged them for the photographs. HP3 did not smear the vials or the inside of the case.

"[Individual] told BRP she has no way of paying for the appropriate disposal of the radium vials. BRP told [Individual] at the time we would try to get USEPA to take possession at no cost to her. ODH BRP contacted USEPA orphan sources program to see if they would be willing to dispose of the radium vials. USEPA confirmed that they will take possession and dispose of the radium vials found at a residence in Harrison, Ohio. ODH informed the resident, [Individual], and indicated that she could expect a call from USEPA.

"ODH-BRP contacted Jim Mitchell at USEPA (orphan sources unit) Chicago, to follow-up on our email we sent them on Monday. We indicated to Jim that ODH will need to be involved in this as they move forward. USEPA agreed and looks forward to the cooperation.

"USEPA has contacted [Individual] and arranged for USEPA to take possession on Thursday 12/4/08 at 10:00 AM. ODH is currently still investigating where the radium came from. USEPA response will also include their investigation unit as they want to pursue how and where the radium was obtained. ODH indicated to USEPA we have the same concern and will need to be included when they meet the resident on Thursday.

"USEPA currently believes their team to include: Gene Jablonowski - Health Physicist Chicago Office, Bill Ryzek - USEPA investigator Chicago Office, Steve Renninger - Cincinnati Office, John Sherod - Cincinnati Office.

"ODH will meet USEPA at the residence: Eric Denison - HP 3, Stephen Helmer."

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Power Reactor Event Number: 44692
Facility: PALO VERDE
Region: 4 State: AZ
Unit: [1] [2] [3]
RX Type: [1] CE,[2] CE,[3] CE
NRC Notified By: TIM GAFFNEY
HQ OPS Officer: DONALD NORWOOD
Notification Date: 12/02/2008
Notification Time: 19:36 [ET]
Event Date: 12/02/2008
Event Time: 16:20 [MST]
Last Update Date: 12/03/2008
Emergency Class: NON EMERGENCY
10 CFR Section:
50.72(b)(3)(xiii) - LOSS COMM/ASMT/RESPONSE
Person (Organization):
DAVID PROULX (R4)

Unit SCRAM Code RX CRIT Initial PWR Initial RX Mode Current PWR Current RX Mode
1 N Y 100 Power Operation 100 Power Operation
2 N N 0 Cold Shutdown 0 Cold Shutdown
3 N Y 100 Power Operation 100 Power Operation

Event Text

LOSS OF ONE (1) EMERGENCY SIREN

"The following event description is based on information currently available. If through subsequent reviews of this event, additional information is identified that is pertinent to this event or alters the information being provided at this time, a follow-up notification will be made via the ENS or under the reporting requirements of 10CFR50.73.

"On December 2, 2008, at approximately 1620 Mountain Standard Time (MST), the Palo Verde Emergency Planning Department discovered that public warning system siren No. 17 was not responding, and therefore, is out of service. The loss of siren No. 17 could potentially impact a population of approximately 1106 people in the 5-mile emergency planning zone (EPZ).

"Since the loss of siren No. 17 could impair Arizona Public Service Company's ability to inform greater than 5% of the population within the EPZ, this notification is being made in accordance with 10 CFR 50.72(b)(3)(xiii). If an event occurs while siren No. 17 is out of service, the Palo Verde Emergency Plan has a contingency for dispatching Maricopa County Sheriff's Office (MCSO) vehicles with loud speakers to alert persons within the affected area. The MCSO is prepared to implement this contingency should it become necessary.

"Troubleshooting to determine the cause of the failure will start tomorrow morning (December 3, 2008).

"The NRC Resident Inspector has been notified of siren No. 17 being out of service and this ENS call."


* * * UPDATE FROM TIM GAFFNEY TO DONALD NORWOOD AT 1531 EST, 12/03/2008 * * *

"Siren 17 was returned to service on Wednesday, December 3, 2008, at 0829 MST."

Notified R4DO (Proulx).

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