published Sunday, May 5th, 2013

Y-12 worker suffered chemical burns in accident

Aerial photograph of the Y-12 nuclear weapons plant in Oak Ridge.
Aerial photograph of the Y-12 nuclear weapons plant in Oak Ridge.
Photo by The Knoxville News Sentinel /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

OAK RIDGE — A Y-12 worker received chemical burns to his face and eyelids while checking a problem with a system in the nuclear weapons plant’s Beta-2 facility.

The Knoxville News Sentinel reports information about April accident was just released in a report by the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board.

According to the report the employee was checking a system that is used to recycle lithium hydride powder when the material discharged into his face. He was wearing safety glasses at the time.

Y-12 spokeswoman Ellen Boatner said the operator has since returned to work

B&W Y-12 is the government’s managing contractor at the Oak Ridge plant. The company has developed corrective actions. A response to questions about the accident and the contractor’s actions is expected next week.

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