One person killed after an accident at Russian uranium enrichment plant: Report

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One person was killed in an accident at a uranium enrichment plant in Russia’s Urals region on Friday but state nuclear corporation Rosatom said the incident posed no threat to the health of people in the area, state media reported.

The factory said the “depressurization” of a cylinder containing depleted uranium hexafluoride had occurred, but that radiation levels at the site and surrounding area were normal.

Uranium hexafluoride is a chemical used in the process of enriching uranium.

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Rosatom, which owns the plant, said the depleted form of the compound was less radioactive than natural uranium and posed
no threat to human health.

“There is no danger of any kind for residents of the city of Novouralsk or the staff of the plant,” said the plant’s deputy production manager, Yuri Mineyev, adding that the factory was working normally.

Urals Electrochemical Combine says it enriches uranium for use in nuclear power plants and is the largest of its kind in the world.

Rosatom did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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