The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant stores nuclear weapons waste deep in underground salt caverns. There was an underground fire in February, followed by a release of radioactivity that contaminated 22 workers and shuttered the facility.
Department of Energy investigators say a radiation release from the federal government's underground nuclear waste dump in southeastern New Mexico was the result of a slow erosion of safety at the 15-year-old site.
In a report released Thursday, they also say the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant near Carlsbad fails to meet federal standards for nuclear facilities and its employees bungled their response to the emergency.
UPDATE 5:30p 2/6: Work has resumed at southeastern New Mexico's nuclear waste repository. But officials say they don't yet know what caused the truck fire that forced an evacuation of the underground site.
A spokesman says an investigation will be conducted at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, where low level waste from the nation's nuclear weapons plants is stored in salt beds.
The site was evacuated and six people were treated for smoke inhalation after a truck hauling salt caught fire Wednesday.