Hello reddit, here is my proof. (picture of me when I graduated basic school).

I make quite a bit and don’t do a lot, my schedule is very short, and a lot of people don’t know these jobs even exist!

So have at it!

Edit: If I didn’t get to your question last night I will today, we don’t get a lot of time between shifts.

Comments: 108 • Responses: 46  • Date: 

MattBaster25 karma

How many zombies do you have to snuff out a day?

Mike-RO-pannus23 karma

Depends on the day...

TrucksAndCigars3 karma

Howbout super mutants?

Mike-RO-pannus3 karma

Hahahaha “You humans! So weak! So STUPID!”

DonnyLem16 karma

I tried to be a guard at an active Plant in PA. Heard the job was very boring. 12 hour shifts, 4 days in three off. Pay is excellent tho. My question is did you have prior military exp? Or any armed security exp in general

Mike-RO-pannus25 karma

I did, ex military and LEO. But the guy next to me in the picture was a gas station attendant and performed very well.

And for the first part you are correct, super boring, we work 3 twelves and are off for four days, but we make more than any police agency in our area and get better equipment and training. So it has its pros and cons.

crack0113 karma

Your hours are way better then me in the army, so where do I sign up

Mike-RO-pannus6 karma

Look at Exelon, they hire a lot of guards for their commercial sites, and they still have a pension. Or any other nuclear power provider for that matter like Southern Company, etc.

As far as DOE work, look at any contractor affiliated with them. Centerra, tripple canopy, G4S, Chenango, NNL, Sandia, theres a whole bunch. Watch them closely, openings come up fast and go away just as quickly.

RolphLV14 karma

Are there any dangers to your health in this job?

Mike-RO-pannus21 karma

Not really, we don’t go anywhere near the waste or anything contaminated as far as radiation concerns go. And there are MANY measures in place to ensure safety for all the employees; which can be cumbersome at times but it is for the best.

Our biggest worries are slip/fall accidents, protesters, or the threat of an active shooter.

RolphLV6 karma

Has there been an incident where you have to use gun at work? How common are attacks and protests?

(I come from a small country in Europe, we don’t have any nuclear plants or waste sites that I know of)

Mike-RO-pannus15 karma

No, since I have done this job only one of our guards actually drew his weapon. It was responding to an alarm that had some evidence of a breach one night. It was a false alarm, but everything is a big deal here.

And do some research, I lived here my whole life and never knew how close I was to a site. You might be surprised.

RolphLV3 karma

Thank you for the answers, your job sure seems interesting

Mike-RO-pannus5 karma

Thank you!

vequira2 karma

Have any of these worries ever materialized?

Mike-RO-pannus10 karma

Slips/fall accidents, yes pretty common.

We did have a small peaceful protest a few years ago but they were very civil and nothing came of it.

However, a different site did have a nun break through their perimeter and spray paint “no nukes” on a waste canister.

No active shooters thankfully, and I really hope that one never materializes.

Edit: changed ever to never.

Mike-RO-pannus3 karma

Was not expecting that picture, holy crap.

She was just arrested, I’m not entirely sure what happened after that. I will try to find an article on it.

Edit , here you go.

ImATacticalTurtle9 karma

How did you find the job? Just found it on a jobsite, or was it from a mate?

What's your wierdest experience? And what do you guys do for fun on the long shifts?

How do you coordinate your shifts with your family? And what do you tell people when they ask what you do for a living?

Also, is it issued gear, or do you get a budget/allowence to spend on new gear and such?

Mike-RO-pannus15 karma

I was referred in by a former work colleague who was impressed with my work as an LEO.

I only work three days a week so it isn’t hard, my wife is a waitress and works her shifts during mine so our time off is concurrent.

It’s all issued, personal gear isn’t allowed although some of our guards would love to be more “tacti-cool” if they had their way. But our gear budget is large enough to begin with so most of us don’t want for anything.


Wierdest experience: we had a really f***ed up looking raccoon in the parking lot. When we went to check it out it stopped, stared at us, and began pissing himself. When he finished he continued on his way, paying us no mind. We didn’t mess with him after that. RIP Rocky.

Mostly we rag on each other or play elaborate pranks... makes the time go by.

ImATacticalTurtle3 karma

Cool - great that your wife can make her shifts work out with your rooster.

Mike-RO-pannus2 karma

Love the username BTW ;)

SpeaksTruthToPower8 karma

What superpowers have you thus far developed with your exposure to radiation?

Mike-RO-pannus18 karma

None... yet. Actually pretty upset about that.

(Follow up answer to the question you didn’t ask: the ability to pelvic thrust like Spongebob when he’s trying to make bubbles)

Beenhamean8 karma

If the plant were ever to be taken over by a super villain would you stay on as a henchman or find a new place to work?

Mike-RO-pannus8 karma

GOOD ONE! I guess it depends on the villain, if it were Megamind absolutely.

Not too sure about bane though, he doesn’t seem to be a great guy to work for. Plus you have to consider the benefits package and all...

tristan_schlarman5 karma

That's some serious gear for a decommissioned nuclear waste plant, want to give us some details on the secret government testing going on in there?

Mike-RO-pannus15 karma

We are not available now but please leave your name and number and we will return you call....... beep.

spasticanomaly5 karma

Is there still hot material on site even though it’s been decommissioned?

I’ve seen some operational facilities but only one decommissioned site and it was very heavily protected just like this. Very interesting!

Mike-RO-pannus3 karma

Yes there is, they just aren’t doing anything with it since they shut down like 50 years ago.

OuchMyDragonBallz4 karma

What's the best way to sneak into a nuclear power plant?

Mike-RO-pannus9 karma

Don’t, most have a lot of whoop-ass behind the gate.

devildogkc3 karma

Also, how old is this picture? Still using iron sights on an M16?

Mike-RO-pannus9 karma

M4, and it is 2 years old. Also, most will train on iron sights before getting any optics, or so I thought.

djdunkinflonuts3 karma

How much cake do you think you could eat in a single sitting?

Mike-RO-pannus4 karma

All the cake.

weetoddid2 karma


Mike-RO-pannus5 karma


leafeonpoliwrath3 karma

Do you enjoy your job? It'd be pretty cool to get to say that you work with nuclear waste

Mike-RO-pannus7 karma

It is neat, I have learned a ton. But overall satisfaction in this field is lacking, due mostly to long hours and mind-numbing boredom.

Very honestly I was happier as a street cop making way less money. But life goes on.

WonderPutty2 karma

Do you carry the guns around all the time like in red vs blue?

Have you seen any mutants? Or is that not possible?


Mike-RO-pannus2 karma

Not always, we need bathroom breaks too.

No... but I’m still looking, they’ll turn up eventually.


WonderPutty1 karma

This is a quality response thank you so much. And if you don't mind I have a follow up question too. How big is the area you guard?

Mike-RO-pannus1 karma

Pretty small by comparison to other sites, a little over 300 acres.

Mike-RO-pannus1 karma

And to answer your question, the ones that are qualified are always armed when on duty.

No... but not convinced.

While WE don’t have grenades at our site, other sites have access to grenade machine guns, mini’s, helicopters, etc.

PittsburghDM2 karma

A few years ago Redjacket Arms was developing an AR that has the gas system of the AK-47 to allow it to fire in any condition. They were working with a government contract and the goal was to give them to state side guards. Specifically for desert like conditions.

Now since I see trees and foliage I assume your plant wasn't in one of the Sandy climates. But did they ever upgrade your weaponry like that or did you always just have the m4.

Secondly, what is the m4 like to fire? I've shot full auto AKs and MACs but never an AR. What are your thoughts and what is your firearm of choice.

Thank you

Mike-RO-pannus2 karma

Very interesting question since I am also my site’s armorer.

The gunsmiths in New Mexico have free reign over their assigned weapons; resulting in some really tricked out AR/AK/HK variants.

But we don’t have the budget for those types of mods, we are lucky to have the rifles on hand. Other sites with bigger budgets might be a different story, there was another guard commenting here maybe he would like to chime in.

The m4 is a good rifle, the ones we trained with were VERY well used and we never had issues with them, so long as you keep them clean. And I had never even seen a full auto m4 until I came to work here, it’s an interesting sensation firing a light shoulder fired weapon on full auto.

I do like the m4 but honestly I’m a big fan of bull-pup rifles like the AUG and TVAR. Just something about the aesthetics and function of that design. As far as side-arms go I’m a big fan of glock, they’re tried and true. Tupperware jokes aside there isn’t a lot of mass produced hand guns that perform like Glock does.

Captain_Frying_Pan2 karma

What was the scariest things that ever happened while you were on shift?

Mike-RO-pannus2 karma

I walked into a building that used to house the waste water and a really loud interior alarm was sounding. Being that I was already in the building I thought I had just received dose from a leak or something, turns out the alarm USED to be serious but is now nothing and erroneously goes off sometimes.

ElMachoGrande2 karma

Say I wanted to steal a decommissioned nuclear waste plant. What would be the best way to go about it?

Mike-RO-pannus3 karma

Put it in your man-pack, obviously.

jackInTheBronx2 karma

What is you annual radiation exposure?

Mike-RO-pannus2 karma

Little to none, my annual check last year showed I picked up the same amount of dose any normal person does from just living on earth. Mostly due to sun exposure.

DestinySuper2 karma

Ever shot anyone in the ass?

Whats your best moment so far?

How can I get a job doing this?

Mike-RO-pannus4 karma

Never shot anyone, ever, thankfully.

Probably all of the jokes we play on each other, I once put a dummy in a truck overlooking the gas pumps and had the guard lose his shit when he noticed, then subsequently lose his shit again for gettin’ got.

Look at the major contractor’s that work the the DOE, NRC, or commercial power plants... company’s like Centerra, Chenango, and Exelon are a good start. Military, LEO, or college will help but not always necessary. Make sure you are physically fit. Hope that helps!

Mike-RO-pannus4 karma

Re: my response to your question. Pic or it didn’t happen.

themasterm2 karma

What's the coolest thing about your job, and what has been your favourite experience?

Mike-RO-pannus3 karma

The coolest thing about my job is learning about radiation. The different types, what each can do to you, what you can do to protect yourself, etc. Also my site has rich history that I am able to get the inside scoop on, so to speak. A lot of the locals have myths and conspiracy theories about the site and we get the rare opportunity to debunk/confirm them.

My favorite experience was basic school, I have been to multiple combat schools, two police academies, and this school was by far the best training I have ever received. Plus the school is in New Mexico which is just gorgeous and I had a great time outside of class.

InDaTwash2 karma

Did you learn about Hiroshi Ouchi?

Mike-RO-pannus2 karma

I haven’t previously but just did a google search... that was pretty messed up. A few things similar to that have happened before.

InDaTwash1 karma

Yeah. The book about him after the accident got recommended to me recently and then I stumble upon an ama about someone who works at an old nuclear waste plant. Funny coincidence.

Mike-RO-pannus2 karma

(X-files music playing in background)

strawhat4king2 karma

What kind of psyche evaluations did you go through before starting the position?

Mike-RO-pannus4 karma

You do an MMPI plus an interview with a psychiatrist initially. Then there are annual follow up interviews plus another MMPI every 5 years.

ac133322 karma

What country (or if you can't say, region) is this? I'm curious given the surroundings and the extent to which you're equipped and armed.

Mike-RO-pannus4 karma

Im in the US, I can’t really get region-specific. Sorry :\

Belted_Pants2 karma

Is nuclear power plant a cover up for guarding the krabby patty secret formula?

Mike-RO-pannus2 karma

Who sent you!?!

clearing1 karma

Do you use any radiation monitoring equipment (other than badges)?

Mike-RO-pannus1 karma

Yes, there are big metal detector looking things called PCMs that we have to go through that will alarm if we’ve been contaminated. There are also small frisker monitors randomly distributed.

Shitpost420691 karma

Do you prefer Dogecoin as payment when you're selling your plants secrets?

Mike-RO-pannus2 karma

I would LOVE to answer that, but these dudes in black suits say I can’t.

These guys are dicks too, they won’t even let me where my tinfoil hat that I worked so hard on.

Shitpost420691 karma

Wal-Mart brand or SnootyIBuyExpensiveFoil brand?

If it's #2, I understand.

Mike-RO-pannus2 karma

I’m a firm believer in you get what you pay for, and i feel the name brand keeps their gamma ray blocking customers in mind.

Not sure how they know that though.....

Oh god.

TrustedByYoungMetro11 karma

  1. What's your daily service loadout? Any requirements/restrictions on weapons, or is it user preference? (So I guess issued or non-issued) I spy an old-school carry handle and birdcage.

  2. Must you be trained in Hazmat Operations or simply just Hazmat Awareness? (Opposed to Technicians and Specialists)

Mike-RO-pannus3 karma

Issued gear only, regardless of personal preference. No weapon mods are allowed. Daily were carrying a sidearm and rifle with a predetermined amount of ammo.

And we are trained in hazmat a little above the awareness level but just in case a truck carrying hazardous material crashes near site.

TrustedByYoungMetro11 karma

Damn, you'd think with a bearcat in the budget they could hook you guys up with some glass!

Mike-RO-pannus1 karma

The bearcat isn’t ours lol we have a pickup.

SkateboyS1 karma

Just starting high school, i am looking for a future job choice, so,

How do you get into this profession?

How did you find out of this position?

How's the pay?

And what restrictions do you have on the job?

Mike-RO-pannus1 karma

Like any other job, you search for it and apply. I had an “in” which got me hired but not everyone on our team did so it isn’t necessary. In most states you need to be 21 or over, and most of us have college, military experience, or have been a prior cop (or all three in my case). If this is truly what you want to do you will need something like that to set you apart from the others.

I didn’t even know the site was anywhere near me until I started working there. I had a friend who suggested I apply to an obscure looking job opening at a company I had never heard of. Then I interviewed at a separate location and was hired. I was given a location and time to show up and the rest is history.

The pay is way above average, it is not unusual for us at our site to make over $70k US. I have heard of guards at bigger sites pulling down over $100k with all the overtime they work. But you really need to buckle down and put life on hold for a year to reach that number.

Not quite sure what you mean by restrictions so I guess I will tell you the down sides.

Long hours, boredom, constant drills which can stress you out, the equipment gets heavy/hot/cumbersome, the things you do get to do are super repetitive, safety policies that don’t do a lot but be annoying, we’re not entitled to breaks (you eat/go to the bathroom when you can). I could go on but the short end is it isn’t for everybody but there are worse places to work.

Good luck ;)

SkateboyS1 karma

Thanks! I guess I'll plan on going through law enforcement training with chp/border patrol. I still have a long wait but I think this is a job I would like.

If you had an in, how would I get interviewed? If I don't know anyone in the profession is there a site or something.

honestly it seems like a job that I can get behind in the future. There's one about 30 mins from my house and hopefully I end up there. You said previously that u can listen to music and honestly that's all I would need to get the job done.

Also what kind of vehicle do you get?

Thanks :)

Mike-RO-pannus1 karma

Your credentials speak for themselves, the only reason I had an in was because he knew my background and was impressed with my police work, then he approached me about it. If you work on it and apply you will get picked up. Look at some of the companies I listed in other comments and watch their job section, I check them almost every day. Also, every federal contract is public information, just google security contracts for (insert GOV agency here) and then research the companies that were awarded contracts.

And we have a simple pickup truck, but other sites have anything from marked police vehicles, to Humvees, to armored trucks and helicopters. Just depends on where you end up.

morejpeg-auto1 karma

Do you listen to music while on shifts?

Also if yes, what music? :)

Mike-RO-pannus1 karma

Yes! I am into all sorts of genres. My main spotify playlist is a nightmare.

Anything from Weird Al to Avatar. I also like Imagine Dragons a lot. Heres a short list of some of the bands i listen too:

Slipknot, korn, thirty seconds to mars, queen, the police, metallica, the lonely island, wham!, the offspring, linkin park, shinedown, elton john, twisted sister, toto, eminem, bloodhound gang....

I could go on forever.

KittyChampion-4 karma

Provide real proof. Thanks.

Mike-RO-pannus1 karma

You’re welcome.

devildogkc-5 karma

What are you going to do when somebody charges you with a handgun and your shit isnt loaded?

Mike-RO-pannus5 karma

So because theres no mag in my rifle in a graduation photo, it’s safe to assume we don’t have them on duty?

IsItMe22 karma

If one never tests that theory, it's fairly safe, I suppose.

Mike-RO-pannus2 karma