Pantex opens new AEOC/JIC
Amarillo downtown emergency facility operational
AMARILLO, Texas – The Pantex Plant has a new Alternate Emergency Operations Center (AEOC) and Joint Information Center (JIC) in downtown Amarillo, providing a dedicated space for emergency response teams during drills, exercises, and real emergencies. When not in use as an AEOC/JIC, the space will be utilized by various Pantex departments for training.
“We are excited to utilize this new space in downtown Amarillo,” Jeff Yarbrough, Pantex site manager said. “This facility will enable our emergency response teams to work more efficiently and effectively during drills, exercises, and events.”
“The location is ideal,” said Reeves Easley-McPherson, Emergency Management specialist and AEOC/JIC building manager. “We are right at the entrance to downtown Amarillo, with easy access to both Interstate 40 and Interstate 27.”
DOE orders require the AEOC be located outside the Emergency Planning Zone (EPZ) – a ten-mile radius around the plant, and the new location is well beyond the EPZ. Previously, the AEOC for the site was located near the Amarillo airport.
The AEOC is an alternate location from which Pantex coordinates information and resources to support incident management activities. The JIC is the central location where public information officials from all participating federal, state, and local agencies collocate during an actual emergency and where news media gather information and updates.
While a JIC would not typically be located in the same place as the AEOC, this new space works for both and provides classroom space for the site to use.
Having a dedicated, standalone JIC enables Pantex and NNSA Production Office (NPO) emergency responders to quickly go into operation during an emergency to provide information to the news media and public. Previously, the JIC was located at various locations within Amarillo College.
The new Pantex AEOC/JIC was first used during an emergency exercise on July 13, 2022.
Consolidated Nuclear Security, LLC operates the Pantex Plant, located in Amarillo, Texas, and the Y-12 National Security Complex, located in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, under a single contract for the U.S. National Nuclear Security Administration. CNS member companies include Bechtel National, Inc.; Leidos, Inc.; ATK Launch Systems, Inc.; and SOC LLC. Pantex and Y-12 are key facilities in the U.S. Nuclear Security Enterprise, and CNS performs its work with a focus on performance excellence and the imperatives of safety, security, zero defects and delivery as promised.
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