WASHINGTON — US government agents hired to drive nuclear weapons and components in trucks sometimes got drunk while on convoy missions, including an incident last year when two agents were detained by police at a local bar during one, according to a report Monday by the US Energy Department's watchdog.
The department's assistant inspector general, Sandra D. Bruce, said her office reviewed 16 alcohol-related incidents involving agents, candidate-agents and others from the government's Office of Secure Transportation between 2007 through 2009. There are nearly 600 federal agents who ship nuclear weapons, weapon components and special nuclear material across the US.
The report said that two incidents in particular raised red flags because they happened during "secure transportation missions" while agents checked into local hotels during extended missions. In these cases, the vehicles were placed in "safe harbor," meaning they were moved to safe and secure locations.