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UK’s secret air transport of nuclear wastes – a cause for concern

“Transporting nuclear waste is a risky business”. “It is disturbing to discover we are now using an extra airbase in heavily populated areas for a stop-off to transport nuclear waste”. “There is no truly safe way to move this nuclear waste from A to B”.

Top secret flights carrying NUCLEAR WASTE from Britain to US ‘to run until late next year’, Mirror UK, By JIM LAWSON 1 APR 2018

Four US Air Force flights carrying highly enriched uranium from Dounreay power station in the Scottish Highlands are said to have left Wick John O’Groats airport bound for South Carolina.  Top secret fights taking nuclear waste between Britain and the US will reportedly continue until late next year.

Four US Air Force flights carrying highly enriched uranium from Dounreay power station in the Scottish Highlands are said to have left Wick John O’Groats airport bound for South Carolina.

 Yet authorities have never confirmed any of the deliveries.

Dounreay, the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, Police Scotland, the Civil Nuclear Constabulary and Wick Airport all refused to comment when asked.

Details of the flights apparently became public when Highland Council informed residents about road closures surrounding the airport – as it is legally obliged to do so. An order published last week was said to be code for “nuclear waste on the move”, suggesting the next consignment could be imminent.

The authority’s notice, published in two local newspapers, said: “The order has been made by reason that the council, as highway authority , is satisfied that traffic on the road should be restricted due to the likelihood of danger to the public.” It adds: “The purpose of the order is to enable abnormal load movements”.

The order will run from yesterday to September 30, 2019 with up to seven more flights expected during the period, it was reported.

A deal to transport highly enriched uranium – the basic building block for making a nuclear bomb – to be flown from Wick to the US was trumpeted by then Prime Minister David Cameron in 2016.

……..Highlands and Islands MSP John Finnie said: “Transporting nuclear waste is a risky business. By using two airports you are doubling the take-offs and landing in this country, which doubles the risk.

“It is disturbing to discover we are now using an extra airbase in heavily populated areas for a stop-off to transport nuclear waste”.

…….. Dr. Richard Dixon, director of Friends of the Earth, said flatly: “There is no truly safe way to move this nuclear waste from A to B”.

A spokesman for the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority said: “Our priority is to comply with the regulations governing the safety and security of nuclear material.  Compliance with the regulations includes protecting information about the routes, times, dates and location”.

Flights left Britain on September 17, 2016, June 3, 2017, September 16, 2017 and December 9, 2017, it was reported. Wick John O’Groats airport is closed to civilian aircraft on Saturdays.https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/top-secret-flights-carrying-nuclear-12287170

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April 2, 2018 - Posted by | safety, UK

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