Uranium plant leak prompts investigation

Uranium plant leak Sunday in southern Illinois is being investigated by an official from the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission. No injuries were reported from the uranium plant leak.  

Honeywell says there's no evidence that a weekend leak of a compound used in uranium enrichment at its southern Illinois plant escaped the building.

Company spokesman Peter Dalpe says no injuries resulted from the leak of uranium hexafluoride Sunday night at Honeywell's site in Metropolis. The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission has been notified, and Reuters reported Wednesday that an inspector from the NRC started an investigation Tuesday, according to NRC spokesman Roger Hannah. 

"At this point we're still in a fact-finding mode," Mr. Hannah told Reuters. "We haven't come to any conclusions about whether processes weren't followed." He said the investigation could take a few days to a week.

The plant helps make nuclear fuel, and still is operating.

It was not immediately clear Monday how much of the uranium hexafluoride was released.

The leak comes at a time the company and union-backed workers at the Massac County plant are embroiled in a contract dispute. Employees have been locked out of the site since August.

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