Energy Department Resumes Tank Farm Work - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Energy Department Resumes Tank Farm Work

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RICHLAND, Wash.- After an almost year-long work stoppage, Department of Energy workers are back to work cleaning up Hanford's tank farms.

Workers have restarted retrieving waste in one tank so far where 85 percent of the deadly waste had been pumped out before operations were shut down last July.

DOE shut down operations after problems with a waste pump caused a waste spill in S-Farm.  

No one was sickened by the spill, but DOE made contractor CH2M Hill Hanford Group revise and improve retrieval systems before resuming work.  

They also improved safety responses after a review showed workers could have better responded to the accident.  

They also think they've fixed the backflow problems that caused the spill.  

This all comes just weeks before CH2M Hill is expected to start handing over tank farm operations to a new contractor, Washington River Protection Solutions.