Radiation alert goes off at Hanford

Radiation alert goes off at Hanford
HANFORD, Wash. -- An alert at Hanford sent four workers to the hospital. Radiation was detected while moving waste. This led to a rare emergency operations alert.

Chris Anderson has lived in Pasco all her life and worked at Hanford for 14 years. The emergency alert didn't surprise her.

"Stuff goes on out there all the time that we don't know about, but it's scary," said Anderson.

Workers were moving waste out of the C-101 tank Wednesday night. Monitoring gear warned them of a leak. They called for an emergency alert and evacuation of the five people in the tank farm. A handful of areas were placed in "take-over" condition, where it's all hands on deck. The all-clear was given a few hours later. A rep from the Department of Energy doesn't remember an alert being issued in at least the past seven years. Alerts are called for if there's evidence of a leak.

"I think we should always think it's a big deal if there is a leak because who knows what it will lead to, I wish they would just get done and get it over with," said Anderson.

Four employees at the tank farm went to the hospital to be checked for radiation exposure. They were released and allowed back to work. Barricades were set up around C Tank Farm, but the D.O.E. says there was no leaked waste spotted. Residents like Chris say if this trend goes on. She will not.

"As long as this kind of thing is going on, I won't be living here, we all won't be living here," said Anderson.

Leaving one request.

"Clean it up and get it gone," said Anderson.

80-percent of the waste has been retrieved and transferred from that farm. Department of Energy officials say they will continue to follow-up and monitor the "C" Tanks.