SPOKANE, Wash. - Workers are preparing to enter one of the most dangerous rooms on the Hanford Nuclear Reservation.
It's a room in the Plutonium Finishing Plant where an explosion in 1976 exposed worker Harold McCluskey to a massive dose of radiation, leading to his nickname as the "Atomic Man." McCluskey lived for 11 more years and died of causes not related to the accident.
The space now dubbed the McCluskey Room has been largely sealed up since the explosion. It is scheduled for its cleanup this summer.
Hanford, located north of Richland, for decades made plutonium for nuclear weapons. The site contains the nation's greatest collection of nuclear waste, and for more than two decades has been engaged in the dangerous work of cleaning up that waste.