LANL could switch to maximum telecommuting if Cerro Pelado fire reaches Dome Road – Los Alamos reporters
BY MAIRE O’NEILL
Los Alamos National Laboratory has entered the “Ready” phase of the Ready-Set-Go wildfire program, effective today. Los Alamos County officially entered this phase on Monday.
The announcement to lab staff shows the fire is approximately 5.5 miles from the lab’s property and “is subject to variable weather conditions. It said there was “no emergency, but staff should start making a plan in case they need to leave the area.”
“Laboratory managers have established set points against which they can make decisions about the status of the lab based on the progression of the fire. As the fire moves closer to the lab site, all employees who are able to telecommute could be placed on Maximum Telecommuting status to provide the safest conditions for employees and the facility,” the announcement said. “The lab is working closely with Los Alamos County, the NNSA and the US Forest Service and other agencies responding to the fire. Extensive planning and preparations have been made to ensure the laboratory is ready should the fire become a threat to our property and facilities.”
The announcement states that as the main body of the fire moves northeast and reaches Dome Road (Forest Service Road 289), lab supervisors will determine whether maximum telework is necessary this map), taking into account the assessment of the fire by the fire management team (e.g. wind speed, fire behaviour).
“Expected windy and dry weather could create these conditions as early as today or Wednesday,” the announcement said.
Maximum telecommuting for laboratory staff means all staff who are required to telecommute and are not required to report onsite unless approved by their Assistant Laboratory Manager. That would be the “set” phase of “Ready, steady, go.” Employees have been instructed to coordinate with their line managers about possible options, such as B. working in the rented building of the laboratory in Santa Fe or from home.
Moving to Maximum Telecommuting status would look similar to the lab operating under COVID-19 restrictions, when the number of people on site was drastically reduced but the function essential to the mission continued. In the event that the lab and community transition to the ready-set-go start-up phase, LANL would execute its business continuity plan.
“Decisions regarding the evacuation of the remaining employees and the city will be made as the fire continues to approach the lab and reach the Alamo Canyon,” the announcement said.