Nearly one thousand people who worked in and around the Ames Laboratory during the middle of the last century may’ve been exposed to a hazardous material. Department of Energy spokesman Brian Quirke says the workers may have been exposed to dust or fumes from the metal beryllium during the late 1940s and early ’50s. He says they’ve identified 776 former Ames Lab workers and 222 of Iowa State University’s former staff, students and others who worked in I-S-U’s Gilman Hall may’ve been exposed. Quirke says they’re all being sent letters and directed to medical clinics for health screenings and blood tests. All medical tests will be paid for by the government. Quirke says in some people, beryllium exposure can prove fatal. Anyone with questions can call toll-free 866-812-6703. Quirke says of the former Ames Lab workers who may have been exposed, about one hundred still live in Iowa.
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