42 Hanford workers evaluated for chemical exposure since last week

RICHLAND, Wash. (AP) — Officials say the number of workers at Hanford Nuclear Reservation evaluated for chemical vapor exposure has climbed to 42 since last Thursday.

The Tri-City Herald reports (http://goo.gl/6nNlDK ) five workers were evaluated by medical professionals Wednesday as a precautionary measure due to reported odors or symptoms such as headaches.

Medical clinic officials evaluated four others on Tuesday.

In all, 31 people have reported symptoms while 11 requested evaluations as a precaution. All have been cleared to return to work.

Officials said last month a tank had leaked several thousand gallons of radioactive waste. The odors are suspected to have come from the transfer of that waste.

Attorney General Bob Ferguson says he's exploring further legal options to keep workers safe and plans to meet with Hanford workers later this week.

Gov. Jay Inslee this week called the vapor issue "disturbing."