A growing number of Hanford workers are reporting possible exposures to tank farm vapors.
A growing number of Hanford nuclear reservation workers are reporting possible exposures to tank-farm vapors.
Since last Thursday, 48 workers have undergone medical evaluations due to reported exposures. That’s more than double the number reported a week ago.
Of those workers, 34 reported symptoms following the possible exposures, according to a statement released Thursday by the Department of Energy’s Office of River Protection at Hanford.
At the Hanford site, near Richland, a massive- and often troubled cleanup is under way in the aftermath of decades of plutonium production for nuclear weapons.
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The tank farms hold highly radioactive and chemical wastes, and contract crews have been transferring the contents from a leaking double-shelled tank.
On Thursday, Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Washington state Attorney General Bob Ferguson visited Richland and met in the afternoon with Hanford workers.
Ferguson last year filed a lawsuit over worker safety issues at Hanford, and has said the exposures over the past week are “shameful.”
“What’s happening at Hanford isn’t right, and I am exploring further legal options to keep our workers safe at Hanford,” Ferguson said in a statement released earlier this week.