Associated Press

Appeals court upholds decision to dismiss lawsuit filed by uranium plant workers

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

PADUCAH, Ky. -- An appeals court on Tuesday upheld a federal judge's decision to dismiss a lawsuit seeking more than $10 billion for Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant workers who say they suffered emotional distress and potential medical expenses because of exposure to radioactive materials and chemical contamination.

The 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati was asked to review the ruling of U.S. District Judge Joseph McKinley in Paducah.

McKinley concluded that plant operators were covered under the Price-Anderson Act, approved by Congress in 1957, that limits the liability of private operators of nuclear facilities "in the event of a nuclear incident."

The suit, filed in U.S. District Court on Sept. 3, 1999, sought damages for as many as 10,000 people who have worked at the plant since it opened 50 years ago.