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Air Force finds toxic gas in base day care center, forgets to act on it for over a year

A Missouri Air Force base is in the spotlight after the installation failed to act on tests that showed elevated levels of radon in two rooms at the base day care facility.

A memo addressed to all Whiteman Air Force Base personnel from the leadership of the 509th Bomb Wing informs readers that a 2022 radon sampling at the base’s child development center found elevated levels of the toxic gas in the day care’s baby and toddler rooms, yet no action was taken on the results until a September 2023 audit of radon sampling at the base.

The memo, which the Air Force confirmed was authentic to Fox News Digital, was originally shared with the popular “Air Force amn/nco/snco” Facebook page. The document said tests revealed samples of radon above the “accepted federal level” in June 2022 while the rest of the rooms in the facility tested below “acceptable levels.” Those results were recorded and submitted to the U.S. Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine (USAFSAM) “but were not acted upon,” the memo reads.

“Although we are taking this matter seriously and making every effort to ensure mitigation of the existing actionable levels, your child’s risk of developing lung cancer as a result of the exposure at the Child Development Center is significantly less than 1%,” the memo reads.

An Air Force spokesperson told Fox News Digital in a statement that the military branch is “reviewing internal records and working with our partners at USAFSAM to determine how” the oversight took place.

“It goes without saying that we take this seriously and we are implementing steps to ensure the safety of children and workers at the site while our bioenvironmental engineers conduct a thorough assessment and determine what level of radon is present and what mitigation steps are appropriate,” the spokesperson stated. “We will provide regular updates as the investigation proceeds and ensure our Striker community is aware of our plans.”

Whiteman Air Force Base did not immediately respond to a Fox News Digital request for comment.


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