Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Illnesses of workers at Hanford nuclear waste site – new investigation

Former nuclear site in Washington state is ‘causing workers to develop terminal illnesses’ – and it won’t be cleaned up for another 50 more years (photos) 

  • The Hanford Site in Washington state was used to produce plutonium from 1943 through the end of the Cold War
  • Washington River Protection Solutions is now cleaning up the site 
  • Workers at the site say they are being exposed to radioactive fumes 
  • A watchdog group says that three workers have died as a result of exposure to nuclear waste on the job  
  • Just this year, 61 workers have allegedly been exposed to toxic materials
  • But the government contractor says that everyone who has been checked out for possible exposure has been cleared to return to work 

A former nuclear site in Washington state is poisoning workers and threatening the health of those who live around it, according to a new investigation.

Some experts have called the former Hanford nuclear plant ‘the most toxic place in America’ and ‘an underground Chernobyl waiting to happen’.

The site, located in a rural area along the Columbia River, was commissioned by the Manhattan Project to produce plutonium for the atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the end of World War II.  

It remained an active nuclear site until the end of the Cold War, when it was decommissioned and the Department of Energy subcontracted Washington River Protection Solutions to start the clean-up.

But current and former workers at the site have told NBC that the underground containers holding the site’s nuclear waste are leaking, and that they have been exposed to the toxic fumes because the company has not given them the right safety equipment.

Their health issues include dementia, nerve damage, memory loss and respiratory problems.

Watchdog group Hanford Challenge says that at least three workers’ deaths have been linked to exposure at the site, but officials with Washington River Protection Solutions have refused to admit they are putting their workers in danger. Those workers are Gary Sall, Deb Fish and Dan Golden.

But several studies show that’s not the case and just this year, 61 workers have allegedly been exposed to toxic materials.

For their story, NBC spoke to DOE Deputy Assistant Secretary Mark Whitney, who said that all workers who have been evaluated for possible exposure have been cleared to return to work. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3986750/Former-nuclear-site-Washington-state-causing-workers-develop-terminal-illnesses-won-t-cleaned-50-years.html#ixzz4RctEncj2

December 2, 2016 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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