10:37 GMT31 May 2020
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    A team of inspectors from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission began a special investigation Tuesday after a worker at a National Institute of Standards and Technology lab was likely exposed to radiation.

    Descending onto NIST's headquarters in Gaithersburg, Maryland, the five-member team began the inspection this week after reports that a "glass ampule broke" in one of the labs back in August.

    According to a September 20 statement from NIST, the employee discovered the contamination August 18 in a lab used to prepare radioactive samples. The ampule had broken inside a "lead-lined container inside of a larger protective storage box."

    Initial tests first indicated that the employee was exposed to a dose of radiation above the NRC's annual occupational limits; however, additional testing is being conducted to determine the actual dose, officials told AP.

    The final results will be included in a report expected within the next 45 days. The NRC team is currently investigating the events leading up to the incident and NIST's corrective actions.


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    National Institute of Standards and Technology, radiation, Maryland
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