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Medical response team to Arkhangelsk test site blast not showing rise in radiation levels

More than 90 specialists were examined

ARKHANGELSK, August 19. /TASS/. Medical examinations of the personnel at Arkhangelsk hospitals who provided assistance to those injured in the August 8 accident at a military test site near Severodvinsk have not shown any excessive radiation levels, the press service of the Arkhangelsk Region administration said on Monday.

"More than 90 specialists from Arkhangelsk’s regional clinic were examined. The results showed that there wasn’t a single case of radiation exceeding safe limits. Twenty medics underwent additional examinations at the Burnazyan Medical Biophysical Center in Moscow with the use of a whole body counter. Radioactive substances in their bodies were found to be within the admissible limits in all cases," the administration said, adding that the health condition of the medical personnel is still being monitored.

The accident at a military test site near Severdvinsk, in Russia’s northwestern Arkhangelsk Region, occurred on August 8. The Russian defense ministry said back then that two people had died in an accident while testing a liquid propellant jet engine, providing no further details. However Rosatom, the Russian state-run atomic energy corporation, said on August 10 that five of its employees had died in a fire and a subsequent explosion during an offshore platform missile test. Three more employees had been taken to hospital.

When the accident occurred, radiation levels in Severodvinsk reached the level of 0.45 microsieverts to 1.78 microsieverts per hour whereas background levels ranged from 0.13 to 0.16 microsieverts per hour.