More workers added to federal berrylium coverage
The U.S. Department of Labor is notifying former Weldon Spring Plant workers in Weldon Spring, Mo., of a change in the status of their work site in connection with the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act. The department’s Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs has published a revised list of EEOICPA-covered U.S. Department of Energy facilities in the Federal Register. This update divides the Weldon Spring Plant site into three separate facilities: the Weldon Spring Plant, the Weldon Spring Raffinate Pits and the Weldon Spring Quarry.
By dividing the Weldon Spring Plant into three separate DOE facilities, OWCP will be better able to distinguish between the different operational periods of these locations and more reliably obtain employment verification from the many different contractors that performed work at each location. Former Weldon Spring Plant employees may be eligible for EEOICPA compensation and medical benefits if they were diagnosed with a covered illness and worked at one of the three facilities during a period of covered employment.
On July 31, 2001, the Labor Department began administering Part B of the EEOICPA. Part B covers current and former workers diagnosed with cancer, beryllium disease or silicosis caused by exposure to radiation, beryllium or silica while working directly for the DOE, that department’s contractors or subcontractors, a designated Atomic Weapons Employer or a beryllium vendor. Part E, created by an amendment to the EEOICPA on Oct. 28, 2004, provides federal compensation and medical benefits to DOE contractors and subcontractors who worked at covered facilities and sustained an illness as a result of exposure to toxic substances.
To date, the department has paid more than $39 million in EEOICPA compensation and medical benefits to 354 Weldon Spring Plant workers and more than $7.9 billion nationwide. For additional information or for claim-filing assistance, contact the department’s Paducah Resource Center in Kentucky toll-free at 866-534-0599.