ARKHANGELSK, August 13. /TASS/. Laboratory analysis of soil, water and sand samples has confirmed that radiation levels do not exceed the background rates in Severodvinsk and adjacent areas after a military test site incident, the local emergencies services said in a statement on Tuesday.
"Beginning from August 8, specialists of the Severodvinsk Center of Hygiene and Epidemiology carried out relevant studies. Laboratory analysis has shown that all the samples correspond to the natural background by alpha, beta and gamma particles. Over all these days, the natural background in the cities of Arkhangelsk, Severodvinsk and Novodvinsk, in the Primorsky and Onezhsky districts has stayed within normal levels," the statement reads.
The samples taken by independent experts have also shown that radiation levels do not exceed the background rates, the local emergencies services claimed.
The incident at the military test site near Severodvinsk in the Arkhangelsk Region occurred on August 8. The Defense Ministry reported that two people had died in the incident with a liquid-propellant engine but gave no details. Russia’s civilian nuclear power corporation Rosatom released a statement on August 10 saying that the fire and the subsequent explosion that occurred during the test of a missile on an offshore platform killed five of its employees. Three others were injured and hospitalized.
Scientific Head of the Nuclear Safety Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, academician Leonid Bolshov earlier told TASS that there was no threat to the health of people after the incident at the military test site in the Arkhangelsk Region.
Comment by the Federal Service for Hydrometeorology and Environmental Monitoring
Russia’s Federal Service for Hydrometeorology and Environmental Monitoring (Rosgirdromet) reported on Tuesday that the radiation levels in Severodvinsk after the August 8 incident at the military test site exceeded the background rate by 4-16 times at some observation stations. However, as soon as half an hour later, the radiation levels decreased radically and the situation came back to normal two hours later, the federal agency stated, citing its data.
"According to the data of the Northern Department for Hydrometeorology and Environmental Monitoring as of 12pm on August 8, 2019, the Arkhangelsk territorial automated radiation control system registered gamma radiation levels 4-16 times above the background rate of the ambient dose equivalent for this territory in six out of eight areas of Severodvinsk," Rosgidromet said in its report.
According to the agency’s data, in Severodvinsk, radiation levels peaked 0.45 microsieverts to 1.78 microsieverts per hour at that time.
At 12.30pm on August 8, the radiation level already ranged between 0.21 microsieverts to 0.44 microsieverts per hour, at 13pm between 0.13 microsieverts and 0.29 microsieverts per hour and at 14.30pm "it came back to normal" and equaled 0.13 microsieverts to 0.16 microsieverts per hour," the report reads.
No rise in the radiation level above the background rate was registered in Arkhangelsk on August 8, Rosgidromet reported.