School where radioactive elements found gets more testing

Posted at 10:49 AM, May 27, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-27 10:49:05-04

PIKETON, Ohio (AP) — An Ohio school district that closed a building where radioactive contamination was found says classes will be moved elsewhere at the start of next school year.

The Columbus Dispatch reports the U.S. Department of Energy conducted testing Friday at the Scioto Valley Local School District's Zahn's Corner Middle School, which was closed earlier this month. The DOE and Pike County Health District are hiring an independent third party to also test for radioactive contamination.

The southern Ohio building is several miles from DOE's Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant, which once produced enriched uranium for nuclear plants and the U.S. nuclear weapons programs.

The DOE reported in 2017 that trace amounts of radioactive neptunium were detected on school grounds. More recently, traces of enriched uranium were detected inside the school.