Two Hanford workers checked for vapor exposure

Tri-City HeraldJuly 17, 2014 

Work underway at the Hanford tank farms.

HERALD FILE

— Two Hanford tank farm workers reported smelling an abnormal odor in the Hanford 200 East Area at 7:15 a.m. Thursday.

The two bring the number of workers to 40 who have received medical evaluations for possible exposure to chemical vapors from Hanford’s underground waste tanks this spring and summer.

One worker Thursday morning reported symptoms and chose to be taken to Kadlec Regional Medical Center in Richland, where he was evaluated and released, according to Washington River Protection Solutions.

Although the workers’ symptoms were not available, typical symptoms include coughing, shortness of breath and headaches. Workers are concerned that chronic exposure may lead to serious medical conditions long term.

The second worker was examined at the Hanford onsite medical provider and returned to work later in the day.

The workers were not in a tank farm and, workers at the nearest farm, the A Tank Farm, did not smell the odors. Access in the area where the odors were smelled was restricted.

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