RICHLAND, Wash. (AP) — Workers at south-central Washington's Hanford nuclear reservation have completed their first full reactor area cleanup, with full remediation of the area around F Reactor.
Nine nuclear reactors were built at the Hanford site to produce plutonium for atomic weapons. Six of those reactors have been sealed up, or cocooned, including F Reactor.
But the Energy Department announced in a statement Wednesday that the reactor is the first to have all of its associated buildings and waste sites cleaned up as well.
The federal government created Hanford in the 1940s as part of the top-secret Manhattan Project to build the atomic bomb.
Today, it is the nation's most contaminated nuclear site, with cleanup expected to last decades.