The Nuclear Regulatory Commission has concluded that Wyoming-based Cameco-Power Resources has fixed its shipping problems that led to radioactive spills south of Blanding, Utah, and can resume shipments of barium sulfate to waste storage facilities.
However, the White Mesa Mill, which formerly accepted the waste then reported to regulators they were leaking en route, said Monday it is not accepting barium sulfate shipments from Cameco at this time, according to a company spokesman.
Twice in eight months — on Aug. 19, 2015, and March 28-29, 2016 — a Cameco container truck shipping barium sulfate from the Smith Ranch, Wyoming, uranium mine to the White Mesa Mill waste-storage facility leaked toxic contents en route. The March incident was the most severe, spilling a trail of the milky radioactive waste onto U.S. Highway 191 south of Blanding.
The spills alarmed nearby residents of the Ute Mountain Ute tribe, who often walk the highway where the spill occurred north of their reservation.