A long-simmering leak inside a double-walled nuclear waste storage tank at the Hanford Site in Eastern Washington got worse over the weekend, sparking an alarm, officials said today.
Online reports from the Tri-City Herald and KING-TV said that the leak detection alarm came on Sunday morning, and that radioactive waste had pooled between the inner and outer shell of Hanford’s Tank AY-102 to a depth of about 8 inches. By today, the waste level had dropped slightly, the U.S. Department of Energy said in a statement emailed to GeekWire.
The Washington State Department of Ecology said there was “no indication of waste leaking into the environment or risk to the public at this time.”
KING quoted a former Hanford worker, Mike Geffre, as saying the leak had become catastrophic. “This is probably the biggest event to ever happen in tank farm history,” he said.
Today’s statements from federal and state officials made the situation sound less dire, however.