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Report: Nuke dump fire in New Mexico was preventable; safety deficiencies identified

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - Federal investigators have uncovered a series of shortcomings in training, emergency response and oversight at the troubled southeastern New Mexico nuclear waste dump where a truck caught fire and 17 workers were recently contaminated by a radiation leak. A report released Friday on the investigation into the first of back-to-back accidents at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant says a Feb. 5 truck blaze apparently was ignited by a buildup of oil and other combustible materials that should have been regularly cleaned off the vehicle.

Radiation detected at New Mexico nuclear plant

US investigators were taking samples Sunday at a New Mexico underground nuclear waste site where airborne radiation was detected, though authorities stressed they had found no contamination. Officials monitoring the possible radiation leak said there was no danger to people or the environment at the Department of Energy's Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, the nation's first repository to seal away radioactive waste, mostly plutonium, used for defense research and the production of nuclear weapons.

Radiation detected at New Mexico nuclear plant

US investigators were taking samples Sunday at a New Mexico underground nuclear waste site where airborne radiation was detected, though authorities stressed they had found no contamination. Officials monitoring the possible radiation leak said there was no danger to people or the environment at the Department of Energy's Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, the nation's first repository to seal away radioactive waste, mostly plutonium, used for defense research and the production of nuclear weapons.

New Mexico judge rules doctors can give terminally ill patients drugs to end their lives

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - Competent, terminally ill patients have a fundamental right under the New Mexico Constitution to seek a physician's help in getting prescription medications if they want to end their lives on their own terms, a state district judge ruled Monday. Second Judicial District Judge Nan Nash said the constitution prohibits the state from depriving a person of life, liberty or property without due process.

Legal challenge to New Mexico 'right-to-die' law set to go to trial this week in Albuquerque

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - A legal challenge to a decades-old New Mexico law that prohibits physicians from helping terminally ill patients die is set to go to trial. The trial is scheduled to begin Wednesday in state District Court in Albuquerque in a lawsuit field in March by the American Civil Liberties Union of New Mexico. A Santa Fe woman with advanced uterine cancer later joined two doctors in their legal challenge. According to the lawsuit, the New Mexico doctors are seeking to be allowed to prescribe medication to terminally ill patients who want to end their lives.

New Mexico high court to hear case for same-sex marriage statewide

By Zelie Pollon SANTA FE, New Mexico (Reuters) - The New Mexico Supreme Court agreed on Friday to decide once and for all whether same-sex matrimony should be legal statewide after several counties began issuing marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples, prompting a legal challenge.

Republican lawmakers join New Mexico legal fight against gay marriage

By Zelie Pollon SANTA FE, New Mexico (Reuters) - Republican lawmakers in New Mexico lined up on Tuesday to join the legal fight against gay marriage in the state, arguing that a county clerk who voluntarily began issuing licenses to same-sex couples last month overstepped his authority. New Mexico state law does not expressly permit or prohibit gay unions, and Doña Ana County Clerk Lynn Ellins began handing out marriage licenses to gay couples two weeks ago, saying he believed "equal protection should apply to everyone."

Early July means time for new laws to kick in around US, here's a look at the changes in NM

SANTA FE, N.M. - This part of summer is a time for patriotism. It's also the time new state laws go into effect across the nation. Fiscal years begin July 1 on most financial calendars, and a slew of state government spending regulations kick in each year on that date. Policy laws also hit the books in a wave, though states often mark their independence by enacting such legislation on their own time.
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