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Text Box: Volume 9, issue    1


Image of Man In Forest

1000 Enclosure – Robinson Road:  Monitoring well installation (September and October).


Behind Building 3109:  Monitoring well installation (October).


PICA 193 – Green Pond Brook:  Surface water, sediment, and

biological sampling (October).





Text Box: Site 23 (PICA 065) Post Farm Landfill:  Groundwater sampling (November).

Area D – Near Bldg 13, 31, 34 and Golf Course:  Monitoring well sampling (September and October).

Mid Valley Area:  Monitoring well installation (September, October, and December).

Text Box: Guncotton Line:  Excavation (January).

Tilcon Removal Action:  Soil windrow investigation (windrows of stockpiled soil) – windrow removed down to native soil and removed soil checked for MEC (December and January).

Area C:  Groundwater sampling (December).  Installation of monitoring wells near MTBE plume (December).



The widespread distribution of MEC from the 1926 explosion has been made self-evident by the detection of MEC at Tilcon Quarry during previous removal actions as well as during the current one.  Recently the USEPA asked Picatinny Arsenal whether owners of neighboring properties are aware of the potential threat of intrusive activities. For example, something as mundane as digging a hole for a fence post could  result in deadly consequences if MEC are unexpectedly encountered.  As a followup the USEPA was contacted to find out whether they had received a reply from the Arsenal.  In the absence of a reply this question was  posed to Picatinny Arsenal again and the results are provided below.


Question from TAPP Consultant:


“Have all the offsite property owners within the 1926 explosion arc been notified about precautions for intrusive activities?  If so, when and how did the notification take place?  “


Reply from Picatinny Arsenal:


Yes, we did notify within the context for the MMRP:


· We sent out an April 2007 letter about then[sic] upcoming Site Investigation with a last paragraph giving some precautions with “if you find something…” I am only providing one copy to one landowner as an example.





· Lisa Szegedi, who works for Malcolm Pirnie who conducted the SI (she also spoken at RAB meetings)  called all of the property owners (except the quarry which was not necessary and the owner K. Doland who could not be found) and notified them about the potential for MEC or UXO.  I’ve attached only one of the available telecon logs just for reference.  


· The Commander(s) have also talked to Mayors of Jefferson and Rockaway directly on this.


· We Also sent the Jan 2008 letters about the MRSPP and an April  30th right of entry letter which did not address the issue of precautions directly. 


· Also Rockaway Police and Rockaway and Jefferson, in general, call Picatinny Security if anything is found that looks like MEC that came from Picatinny.’


Picatinny Arsenal supplied as samples the transcript of a telephone conversation with a property owner and a copy of a notification letter to property owners.  The notification letter was sent as part of an MMRP site investigation. This letter mentions the potential presence of munitions (and the “slight possibility that munitions are located in these off-installation areas”) but it fails to mention the potential threat of disturbing one of these live munitions.





Removal actions at Tilcon Quarry have shown

that some of the MEC can be extremely dangerous.  Given what has been detected at the quarry since the letters were sent out and the inherent uncertainty of knowing exactly where MEC from the 1926 explosion may have been distributed it would seem prudent to  advise property owners adequately about the potential danger of intrusive activities and the need to notify the Arsenal before attempting any such intrusive activity. Further inquiry of Picatinny Arsenal revealed that more comprehensive information was provided to property owners in the form of a fact sheet sent along with the April 2007 letters. This fact sheet included a protocol for responding to the detection of UXO. The Arsenal also noted that one of the properties is owned by a real estate corporation and that the remainder have various non-residential uses.


Michael Glaab comments : “Picatinny Arsenal continually informs the PAERAB about MEC/UXO investigations and removals and about such local off-base MEC discoveries. Tilcon is represented on the board and we strive to assist liaison efforts between the Arsenal and its neighboring communities with reports to local officials and by posting  pertinent information on our website and in the TAPP Contractor’s newsletter. If the Army’s current measures can be improved then I expect that the Army will continue to act responsibly and make improvements“.


Keeping the neighbors duly informed...

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