Thursday, March 28, 2013

NASA poorly managed explosives

NASA's inspector general said in a report released Wednesday that explosives were improperly handled at several NASA centers, but commended the agency for taking quick corrective action. Stennis Space Center, Miss., was cited for storing explosives in an unsafe building during part of 2012, though the situation has since been resolved. Inspector General Paul Martin's report said NASA's overall Explosives Safety Program "was poorly managed and exposed personnel and facilities to unnecessary risk." Inspectors identified 155 violations of regulations, policies and procedures at four NASA centers that routinely procure, store, transport, and handle explosive materials, pyrotechnics, and propellants, or energetic materials. In addition to SSC, audits were done at Glenn Research Center, Ohio, Wallops Flight Facility, Va., and White Sands Test Facility, N.M. All had violations. "To NASA's credit, personnel at each site quickly addressed the issues we uncovered that presented an immediate threat to personnel and facilities." (Sources:, IG report, 03/27/13)