According to Los Alamos National Laboratory officials, about 12 employees were accidentally exposed to Technetium-99, a type of low-level radiation that travels fast, but is stopped by the clothing and skin. As of press time, LANL is determining when and how the exposure occurred.
“They are investigating what exactly happened and how to accurately characterize it at this point,” said LANL Public Information Officer Nancy Ambrosiano.
The dosage the workers received is approximately 10 times lower than the allowable amount of millirems by law and does not pose a public health threat, according to LANL officials.
LANL officials are also saying that some of the employees apparently took the radiation home with them and a clean-up operation is now underway. As of late Monday afternoon, LANL officials could not say where the employees may have traveled after they left the lab.
One place that was checked though was Chamisa Elementary School. According to a statement on the school’s site, Chamisa was given the all clear sign, with no signs of contamination found.
“We appreciate the thoroughness of the lab in assuring the safety of our students and staff,” said a statement on the site.