URANIUM HEXAFLUORIDE CYLINDERS SURVIVE TRAIN DERAILMENT

A serious train derailment took place in North Carolina in March of 1977. Two of the twenty-nine cars which went off the tracks carried radioactive materials in the form of natural uranium hexafluoride. The packaging for this low specific activity material is a 48 inch diameter by 12.5 foot long cylinder constructed of 5/8 inch thick steel. Each of the four cylinders contained approximately 12,500 kg. The cylinders were mounted on steel cradles which were securely fastened to trailers which in turn were riding on flatcars in standard piggyback fashion. All four of the trailers and cylinders were damaged. The condition of each cylinder immediately after the accident, the recovery and subsequent shipment to Oak Ridge, the receipt inspection and the final disposition of the cylinders and the contents are described in the paper. The immediate response of the media to the news that radioactive material was on the train resulted in a great deal of misinformation being disseminated. In contrast to the initial reports of leakage, there was no breach of the containers and no radioactive contamination of any kind. The National Transportation Safety Board has issued a report on the accident recommending development of guidelines for emergency response procedures.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • From 5, symposium on packaging and transportation of radioactive materials; Las Vegas, Nevada, May 7, 1978. CONF-780506-(Vol. 2).
  • Corporate Authors:

    Transnuclear, Incorporated

    1 North Broadway
    White Plains, NY  USA  10601
  • Authors:
    • Teer, B R
  • Publication Date: 1978

Media Info

  • Pagination: p. 612-614

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00322949
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Energy Research Abstracts
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Dec 30 1980 12:00AM