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Morgan EMA to get radiation detection units

By Sheryl Marsh
DAILY Staff Writer 340-2437

The Morgan County Emergency Management Agency plans to get radiation monitors for screenings at evacuee reception centers in Hartselle and Priceville.

The County Commission authorized Chairman John Glasscock to advertise for bids for the equipment Wednesday.

EMA Director Eddie Hicks said the monitors are primarily for any accident related to Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant.

"The monitors will make the processing of evacuees much faster," said Hicks. "They can pass through the monitors, not have to undergo the individual hand-wanding scan. The monitors are multi-functional, but they're primarily for Browns Ferry. They can detect radiation from any source."

The monitors will determine whether evacuees have radiation exposure, Hicks said.

Currently EMA has two monitors that are not set up. All the monitors will be at reception centers at the old Priceville High School gymnasium and Hartselle Junior High School, Hicks said.

The state EMA bought the monitors and assigned them to the county. Glasscock will get bids for three monitors and that will bring the number up to two at each center. One monitor will serve as backup, Hicks explained.

Estimated cost is $10,000 for each monitor. Tennessee Valley Authority, which operates Browns Ferry, will pay for the monitors.

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