Number of patients at Kárahnjúkar under debate Skip to content

Number of patients at Kárahnjúkar under debate

Ómar Valdimarsson, Impreglio’s spokesman, has claimed that local physician Thorsteinn Njálsson’s statement that 180 Impreglio workers had fallen ill due to pollution by the dam is greatly exaggerated.

Valdimarsson said only eight workers had suffered from illnesses caused by air pollution in an influx tunnel, which was closed down this week, but the remaining 172 workers had sought medical attention for other reasons since April 10, as reported in Fréttabladid.

Thorsteinn Njálsson claimed the numbers were not exaggerated, but pointed out that it is always difficult to interpret evidence like this. Njálsson also claimed an Impreglio employee had stolen the list with the names of the 180 workers who had fallen ill.

“A man who works at the healthcare unit on their behalf [Impreglio] stole this information,” Njálsson said and added that he had filed a complaint with the Directorate of Health.

Director of Health Matthías Halldórsson told Fréttabladid it is not right for Impreglio’s superiors to have information on who of their workers sought medical attention. “I have requested an explanation of this matter. The employers should not have this information at all.”

Halldórsson has also requested information on why the Directorate’s Disease Prevention Department was not notified of the situation at Kárahnjúkar, which is a legal obligation according to a recent amendment to legislation on disease prevention.

Representatives from the National Energy Company and Impreglio held a meeting with representatives of East Iceland’s Institute of Health yesterday about the situation at Kárahnjúkar.

Click here to read yesterday’s story about the matter.

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