State Says Latest Yankee Contamination May Be Less Serious

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(Host) The state Health Department says that the latest leak detected at Vermont Yankee may be less serious than last year’s contamination.

Bill Irwin is the state’s radiological health chief. He attended a briefing at Yankee last week along with officials from New Hampshire and Massachusetts.

Irwin says Yankee’s preliminary findings about the source of the latest groundwater contamination indicate that a relatively small amount has leaked into the ground.

Irwin says the pipes that probably leaked this year are smaller and contain substantially less water than the source of last year’s leak.

(Irwin) "Now we don’t know the length of time that a leak may have occurred, and that will affect the total volume, but it does give us some sense that as compared to the 75,000 gallons or more that may have leaked from the advanced off gas building last year that this might be a significantly smaller leak."

(Host) Irwin says the state is waiting for more information from Yankee. Plant officials are now testing the nearby pipes to locate the source of the leak.

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