BA planes being checked for radiation
1 Dec, 2006 06:15
Britain is checking five airliners and more than two dozen sites in and around London for radiation levels. It's all part of a widening probe into the death of former Russian security officer, Alexander Litvinenko.
Britain has given the all-clear to two of five planes being checked for radiation as part of the investigation into the death Litvinenko. One plane leased by the Russian TransAero airline has been given the all-clear after a police check at London's Heathrow airport. Low traces of radiation were found on two British Airways jets. A third BA craft in Moscow is expected to be flown to London to undergo tests. A fourth plane, belonging to Russian airline Transaero, has also been checked but the airline official later claimed that no toxic substance was found on any of its planes. Traces of radiation have been found on a British Airways plane in Moscow. Earlier British police investigating the death of Aleksandr Litvinenko in London found radiation on two planes at Heathrow airport. Police have also confirmed traces of radioactivity at twelve sites in London but haven't said whether it was the same polonium 210 used to poison Litvinenko. Experts say there is very difficult to make the substance at home and it's impossible to determine where it came from. British Home Secretary John Reid has said around 24 venues have been, or are being monitored, and experts have confirmed traces of contamination at around 12 of them. All international airports in Russia have been directed to strengthen security measures for international flights, in light of the discovery of polonium 210 on planes. The Transport Ministry has ordered the tightening of control over liquid and helium luggage items, as well as inside airplanes and cockpits.