KING 5 News, Sept. 17, 2014: Investigators expose a continuing pattern… If you work [at Hanford] and speak up about safety concerns, watch out. Chances are you’ll be met with harassment, intimidation, and the end of your career… Hanford’s tank farms [hold] the deadliest substances on Earth… Shelly Doss: “If you just ignore [the rules]… you risk contaminating the person… contaminating the environment… These were blatant violations”… Managers [said] she was to ignore that and 5 other major violations… “They were very angry because they’d been getting away with it.”… After 23 years… Shelly Doss was… fired… In the last year, they fired… 2 high-profile Hanford managers who blew the whistle. >> Watch video here
- Part I at 0:15 in — My brother… is one of the many infants who died shortly after birth in what is now known to be the Hanford downwind area.
- Part 2 at 12:30 in –My father died of thyroid cancer 3 years ago. He was [a nuclear safety engineer] at Hanford who believed that there was nothing wrong there… [I have severe thyroid disease and] my mother had thyroid disease. There’s no history of thyroid disease anywhere in our family… My whole family’s dead now… My mother died this March of rapidly metastatic malignant melanoma… just took over her body. It killed her in 6 weeks. I’m not saying this to evoke pity [but] to educate people.
- Part 3 at 1:00 in — The most logical reason I’ve heard for why this information on radiation… wasn’t shared with the public is liability. The government doesn’t want to deal with people’s health problems caused by the involuntary exposures.
- Part 4 at 1:30 in — [My dad] didn’t want to admit that he had thyroid problems, because he was a nuclear engineer and [said] nothing was wrong with Hanford… It erupted almost overnight into masses [and] went all over his body… Then he suddenly had 20 masses in his lungs. I thought, ‘This is like a science fiction movie,’ because it’s moving much faster than cancer ever moves… [He received] a letter from the Dept. of Energy… saying in response to his letter asking whether he had ever been a subject of human radiation experiment, yes he had been.
- Part 4 at 6:30 in — In March this happens again… [My mom's] whole body is getting eaten up by malignant melanoma. There are tumors everywhere, they are just growing all over. You could see them growing in her stomach, it was surreal. These two people died deaths which are very bizarre; you don’t see this in normal life. It’s like you take a science fiction movie — look at this person getting eaten up… If I simply state the facts, [the American Nuclear Society and DOE] accuse me of being emotional and over-involved… They say thyroid cancer’s a slow-moving disease and people don’t die.
- Part 5 at 1:00 in — Last Christmas my mother was still alive… I was going to Oak Ridge for a meeting and my mom said you could visit our old friends… she listed 6 couples… she just kept saying, ‘No, they’re dead. No that’s right, they died… Well, they’re all dead, I guess you don’t have to visit any of them.’ She didn’t think it remarkable that they’re all dead… There’s this incredible number of my parents’ colleagues who are dead from cancer… They just didn’t want to put 2 + 2 together and say, ‘Everybody’s dead from cancer, isn’t that weird?’ Yes, it is weird –and now you are both dead of cancer mom and dad… just the strangest, fast-moving cancers. If you could put all my parents friends together would be just 2% to 3% of them alive still, it is so amazing.
- Part 5 at 13:00 in — No [family] history of thyroid disease yet 4 of 4 members of my family developed [it]… There are lots of families with multiple incidence.
Published: September 19th, 2014 at 3:39 pm ET