March 2003

War alert: SELLAFIELD set to increase security levels

Whitehaven News, 20 March 2003

[Posted 24/03/2003]

SELLAFIELD is all set to strengthen its security in the face of Iraq war fears and a possible terrorist reprisal.

The site is ready to go on to Amber for the first time since the New York Twin Towers attack.

"We will be able to quickly move to Amber at short notice if directed to do so although at present there is no intelligence to suggest there is any credible threat to Sellafield," said BNFL spokesman Jamie Reed.

He went on: "Some of the increased security activities required under Amber will have an immediate effect on the workforce. We can't disclose details of any security precautions but some of the measures will be time consuming and may lead to significant traffic congestion. In order to alleviate any inconvenience to the local community, all Sellafield workers have been asked to car share or use public transport wherever possible. If Amber is declared and the traffic congestion does produce major difficulties, it will be necessary to ban all single occupancy cars from entering the site. These vehicles will be directed to the Yottenfews car park where a shuttle bus service will transport people on to and off the site."

Amber is next to the highest of the Sellafield security alerts after Black and Special. Red is the highest.

n The Iraqi crisis has led to roads transport minister John Spellar calling off his visit to Copeland - once again.

Yesterday Mr Spellar was due to meet a Copeland Council delegation over the controversial decision to de-trunk the A595 south of Calderbridge along with general road communication issues. Fergus McMorrow, for the council, said: "Cabinet ministers were not allowed to leave London because of the Iraq situation but Mr Spellar is still keen to come later on."

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