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DU Contamination in Test-Firing at Shoeburyness

It has emerged that DU contaminated gun barrels from Eskmeals (the DU test site in Cumbria) were used for test firing non-DU rounds in Shoeburyness recently. In a response to a parliamentary question from Dr. Jack Cunningham MP, Dr Moonie said that no environmental impact assessment was carried out before the test firing in November, and nor was there any planned for the worn barrel trial due to take place in January. However, a risk assessment for the routine use of DU contaminated barrels was carried out by the Departmentís Radiation Protection Adviser, the then DERA Radiation Protection Services, in May 2000. Although this assessment concludes that no DU will be released from the barrel, environmental monitoring was conducted at the start, during and after the firings on 20 November. That this question was raised in parliament after so many recent parliamentary questions relating to DU in Afghanistan, shows the concern about the safety of DU.

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From CADU News 9: Winter 2001/2002

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