Oak Ridge, Anderson County (WVLT) - An operational emergency has been declared at Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge.
Bill Wilburn from Y-12 says there was a small fire around 9:30 a.m. in Building 9204-2E that was immediately put out.
Willburn says it was a uranium chip fire. He explained that uranium chips are capable of spontaneously combusting in the right conditions.
Employees used coke, similar to graphite, to smother and extinguish the fire.
Wilburn says the fire did cause some smoke, and that led them to evacuate the building. Approximately 150 people work in the building.
There were no injuries.
Willburn says no protective action recommendations have been issued for areas outside the Y-12 site boundary and none are anticipated.
Right now, Y-12 crews are checking inside and outside the building, but they do not anticipate any contamination.
Operational Emergencies are major unplanned events or conditions that represent a significant degradation in the level of safety at a DOE/NNSA facility and that require time-urgent response efforts from outside the facility.
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