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Originally published Thursday, January 21, 2010 at 8:40 AM

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More Hanford downwinder claims going to trial

More Hanford downwinders could be going to trial to press claims that thyroid disease was caused by releases by early contractors at the nuclear reservation.

The Associated Press

TRI-CITIES, Wash. —

More Hanford downwinders could be going to trial to press claims that thyroid disease was caused by releases by early contractors at the nuclear reservation.

The Tri-City Herald reports a federal judge in Spokane decided to select 30 cases for trial as soon as October.

Judge William Fremming Nielsen said yesterday both sides appeared far apart in settlement talks in the 19-year case.

Almost 2,000 people have pending claims. Ten have been resolved through litigation since the case was filed in 1991 and some jury decisions have been reversed on appeal.

Although attorneys are representing early Hanford contractors, the U.S. government is responsible for any judgments.

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Information from: Tri-City Herald, http://www.tri-cityherald.com

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