Report: Firearm discharged inside hardened vehicle; accident was in Y-12’s Protected Area

The accidental discharge of a firearm at the Y-12 National Security Complex occurred early Sunday (July 28) when a security police officer was “repositioning” his weapon inside a hardened patrol vehicle, which he shared with another security officer.

According to the occurrence report filed by Y-12, the repositioning of the officer’s “duty firearm” caused “an unintended discharge of that firearm.” A single round was discharged, but it “impacted the interior wall of the hardened vehicle causing fragmentation,” the report stated.

A federal spokesman at the Oak Ridge plant earlier this week said the incident was under investigation but declined to offer any details of what took place beyond the fact that there was an accidental discharge of a firearm.

The two security police officers apparently were struck by the fragments, either from the ammunition or from pieces dislodged from the vehicle’s interior. They were treated at the scene with first-aid and then transported to the Methodist Medical Center of Oak Ridge, where they additionally treated and released.

The injuries were described as minor.

The occurrence report was filed July 30. The report said the firearm that accidentally discharged was grounded and taken out of service. A site-wide “safety configuration check” of weapons was conducted at Y-12.

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About Frank Munger

Senior Writer Frank Munger covers the Dept. of Energy's Oak Ridge facilities and many related topics — nuclear weapons, nuclear waste and other things nuclear, environmental cleanup and science of all sorts. Atomic City Underground is, first and foremost, a news blog, but there's room for analysis, opinion and random thoughts that have no place else to go.