Nine months after the Rio Olympics, a new problem emerges — defective medals – Chicago Tribune

The Rio Olympics experienced their fair share of problems last summer (green pool water, controversial boxing judges, basic plumbing). Now nearly nine months after the Games ended, it looks like organizers in Rio de Janeiro are still experiencing some hiccups. The latest issue has to do with medals handed out to more than 130 winners – they’re rusting, chipping or as Agence France-Presse put it, “falling to pieces.”

“We’re seeing problems with the covering on between six or seven percent of the medals and it seems to be to do with the difference in temperatures,” Rio Games communications officer Mario Andrada told reporters Friday (via AFP).

Andrada didn’t go into exact details about what exactly he thought was happening, but he called it “completely normal.”

Olympic gold medals, for example, are actually just 1.34 percent gold. The rest is made of sterling silver, ABC News reports. And about 30 percent of the silver in those thousands of medals awarded in Rio came from recycled silver.