by GARY CHITTIM / KING 5 News
When organizers put on their annual Cool Desert Nights car show and parade in Richland, they need a permit.
When the Department of Energy and its contractors want to truck radioactive waste short distances, they need the very same permit.
Transportation of various levels, including high level nuclear materials, requires no more that a Special Events Permit issued by the City of Richland.
The hazardous waste shippers are asked a series of questions: Will there be alcohol for sale? Will there be food? Vendors? Will it be merchandise or an inflatable play area?
Sometimes the permits are issued for three-month periods and can be used any time after heavy traffic hours.
In one case, a contractor moved hazardous transuranic waste with a parade type permit because meeting federal transportation packaging standards would be “cost prohibitive for this one time movement of this material.”
Handlers did, however, recently discover one shipment violated radioactive safety standards, leading to a temporary suspension of the shipments.