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Workers demolishing Hanford’s Plutonium Finishing Plant still vulnerable to airborne radiation

Hanford radioactive monitoring not protecting workers, By Annette Cary, Tri-City Herald,  January 25, 2018 New test results show that monitoring for airborne radioactive contamination has not protected Hanford nuclear reservation workers as the site’s highly contaminated Plutonium Finishing Plant is demolished.

Two more Hanford workers have inhaled or ingested small amounts of airborne radioactive material, with tests for 180 workers still pending, according to the Department of Energy.

The most recent results were for the first 91 workers who requested testing after a spread of radioactive material was discovered in mid-December.

In addition, air samples collected and analyzed at sites outside the demolition zone around the plant show that airborne radioactive contamination was not found in 2017 by other monitoring methods meant to more quickly warn of a potential danger to workers.

A memo with the latest results for both checks for radioactive contamination of workers and for air monitoring results was sent to Hanford workers Wednesday afternoon by Doug Shoop, manager of the DOE Hanford Richland Operations Office.

In one case, airborne contamination that appeared to be linked to demolition of the plant was found about 10 miles away, near the K Reactors along the Columbia River, workers were told. The finding follows an earlier discovery of airborne contamination in June at the Rattlesnake Barricade, a secure entrance to Hanford just off public Highway 240……..


January 26, 2018 - Posted by | health, radiation, USA

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