BUFFALO, NY --
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Buffalo District awarded a cost reimbursable contract to North Wind Site Services, LLC, of Idaho Falls, Idaho, for the removal of the former Production Building, the largest building on the Luckey Formerly Utilized Sites Remedial Action Program (FUSRAP) Site.
The building is being removed to provide safe access to clean up soil underneath, which is contaminated with beryllium, radium-226, thorium-230, uranium-234, uranium-238, and lead.
The Production Building, which began to collapse earlier this year, was used for the production of beryllium from 1949 to 1958 under a contract with the Atomic Energy Commission. Since the Luckey Site is eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places, the district is coordinating with the Ohio State Historic Preservation Office before removal of the building starts.
“We are pleased to begin the process to take this building down.” said Lt. Col. Eli S. Adams, Corps of Engineers Buffalo District Commander. “The removal of this hazard is something the community has been requesting for a long time. During the deconstruction of the building, the protection of human health, including our site workers and the community, and the environment will be our highest priority.”
“This announcement by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is another promising step in the cleanup of the Luckey site,” said Congressman Bob Latta (R-OH5). “I’ve shared the same concerns as the Luckey community about the abandoned production building, and this new contract to safely remove the contaminated structure is welcome news. I’d like to thank the Army Corps for continuing to meet with me to provide updates on their progress and for working diligently to remove contaminated soil and materials while keeping local residents safe. The added financial certainty for the project will help ensure a full and thorough cleanup is completed.”
The awarded contract amount for removal of the building was $11.8 million. Before work begins, the contractor will be required to submit several written plans to the Corps of Engineers regarding the methods that will be used to complete the project. Deconstruction is scheduled to begin early in 2021 and is estimated to take about one year to complete.
The Corps of Engineers continues soil remediation at the site. The Phase 1 excavation area was completed in July and excavation in the Phase 2 area is currently 38% complete. The entire site remediation is 39% complete. The Corps of Engineers continues to actively monitor the evolving COVID-19 situation and is in regular communication with site personnel and contractors to emphasize the importance of taking appropriate actions -- such as social distancing, wearing appropriate protective equipment, temperature screening of individuals before entry into the site, and personal hygiene measures -- to safeguard employee health and welfare while working during the pandemic.
The Corps of Engineers is the lead federal agency for FUSRAP, and implements the program following the framework of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA). FUSRAP was initiated to identify, investigate, and, if necessary, clean up or control sites throughout the U.S. contaminated as a result of Manhattan Engineer District or early Atomic Energy Commission activities.
The Luckey Site is being cleaned up in accordance with a 2006 record of decision for the site soils. The remedy for groundwater, documented in a separate record of decision issued in 2008, is monitored natural attenuation of groundwater. Once the contaminated soil is removed from the site, concentrations of these contaminants in groundwater will decrease naturally in the subsurface. Groundwater wells will be sampled annually for beryllium, lead, and uranium until sampling results show a progressive trend that indicates safe drinking water standards have been met.
An infographic tracking cleanup progress is posted weekly to the web at https://www.lrb.usace.army.mil/Missions/HTRW/FUSRAP/Luckey-Site/.
Those interested in receiving email Luckey Site updates on progress made at the site can email firstname.lastname@example.org.