Local News


US 95 reopened after hazardous waste fire

Posted at 7:23 PM, Oct 19, 2015
and last updated 2015-10-19 22:23:07-04

THIRD UPDATE: The U.S. 95 has been reopened to traffic effective immediately. Officials have tested air quality and say there is no threat of contamination. Several traffic routes will remain closed until further notice. This includes Highway 267 to Scotty's Castle and Death Valley due to road damage.

SECOND UPDATE: Officials say a fire is out at a closed radioactive waste site in Nevada, and law enforcement and state agencies are descending on the rural area to test air quality and check for any other problems.

The site had accepted low-level radioactive waste for 30 years before closing in 1992.
The fire was reported by US Ecology, which now operates a neighboring facility. The site where the fire started is now under the control of the state's Department of Health and Human Services.

Radiation detection aircraft are flying over the site of a fire at a closed radioactive waste disposal facility northwest of Las Vegas. Four Nevada National Guard hazardous materials detection team members are on site.  

Nevada National Security Site spokesman Darwin Morgan said Monday that the government contractor provided a twin-engine fixed-wing airplane and a helicopter for fly-overs near the town of Beatty in Nye County.
Nevada Guard Maj. Mickey Kirschenbaum says the hazardous detection unit arrived Monday from Carson City.

UPDATE: U.S. 95 was originally closed Sunday morning due to the flooding and debris. Nevada Department of Transportation crews cleared the road and opened the highway to one lane of traffic around 6:30 p.m. However, around 7 p.m., the road was closed again due to the fire. 

The highway remains closed from State Route 160 to Tonopah until further notice. U.S. 93 is a suggested alternate route.


A fire continues to burn at a U.S. Ecology site outside of Beatty in Nye County.

The flames broke out Sunday afternoon, but it's unknown what caused the fire. U.S. Ecology offers treatment, disposal and recycling of hazardous and radioactive waste.

Current air quality monitoring near the site shows no indication of contamination but it will be continue to be monitored. The fire is located about 8 miles from populated areas.

“I have directed state agencies to mobilize resources and continue working with local authorities," said Gov. Brian Sandoval. "Our top priority is the health and safety of Nevadans and those traveling near the incident site."

Sandoval directed the Department of Public Safety including the Highway Patrol, State Fire Marshal and Emergency Management Divisions, Department of Health and Human Services, Nevada National Guard including the Civil Support Team, Department of Transportation, and Division of Environment Protection to determine the amount of damage and work with the local officials to monitor the ongoing situation.

State personnel have activated the state Emergency Operations Center in Carson City and will remain on-site to continue coordinating resources and provide updates.

This is a developing story and Action News will bring you the latest as updates are made available.