A Chinese oil company operating in Sudan evacuated dozens of workers to Khartoum for medical tests after they were apparently exposed to radiation from device mistakenly left outside its designated area over the weekend.
The Al-Taghyeer daily published in Khartoum said 70 workers from a field in West Kordofan were directly exposed to dangerous levels of radiation for up to three consecutive days.
“One of the engineers reportedly left the device used in oil exploration inside the workshop without properly securing it at its underground location which is 200 kilometers away from the workers,” a report by the Sudan Tribune said.
A medical source confirmed the incident and said the workers are being monitored.
One worker who requested anonymity told the Al-Taghyeer that the first batch sent to Khartoum consisted of 21 workers including 13 Sudanese, 2 Pakistani and 6 Chinese.
“He explained that the device remained at the workshop frequented by workers and engineers without any protection from six o’clock Friday evening until Monday evening (local time),” the report said.
The device was only discovered as missing after machinery in the vicinity “stopped working as a result from the device’s radiation,” the report said.