Hanford ordered to come up with plan to restart plant demolition

Hanford Demolition Put On Hold

HANFORD, Wash. - The demolition of Hanford's Plutonium Finishing Plant will be put on hold until it can be completed safely, according to the Department of Ecology.

Demolition was originally put on hold in mid-December, when specks of radioactive material were found outside of the containment zone. Specks were detected as recently as Jan. 3.

Alex Smith works for the Department of Ecology and says the Department of Energy will now have to come up with a detailed plan on how they will finish the job without the spread of radioactive contamination.

"They're taking it very seriously," Smith said. "They've expanded the area of concern and its protection zones so no one can go in without authorization."

After the plan is done, the Department of Energy will organize an expert panel to review it. Hanford officials say they will not move forward until they're sure they can do it without the spread of contamination.

The Department of Energy tested dozens of government vehicles and did several home checks when the radioactive specks were first discovered. Sixteen vehicles were found to be contaminated and are in the process of being cleaned.

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