UNR to move staff from building where radiation was found

RENO — University of Nevada, Reno, officials are discussing what to do about a building where low levels of radiation were found.

For now, 30 employees working in UNR’s Facilities Services Building, which was built in 1920, will be moved to new offices this week, the Reno Gazette-Journal reported. University President Marc Johnson said in a letter sent out Tuesday that the radiation readings in the building are below the government’s maximum permitted exposure.

Officials say low levels of radiation were found in the building late last year and are believed to be the result of U.S. Bureau of Mines research conducted on the separation from radium from ore until about 1924.

Director of Environmental Health and Safety Stephanie Woolf says the risk to people who have been in the building is very low.

Officials say they will ask the federal government for funds to tear down or decontaminate the building, although Johnson says he prefers the decontamination route given the historic nature of the building.

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