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Friday, March 6, 2009

DEP TO COMPLETE HAZARDOUS MATERIAL CLEANUP IN LANCASTER COUNTY

Strube Inc. Warehouses Contained Low-Level Radioactive Aircraft Parts

HARRISBURG – The Department of Environmental Protection will oversee the remaining cleanup efforts of low-level radioactive aircraft instruments at eight Strube Inc. warehouses in four Lancaster County communities.

“Over the past year, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, its contractors and Strube Inc. and its contractors identified, removed and shipped for proper disposal approximately 400,000 low-level radioactive instruments and gauges,” DEP Bureau of Radiation Protection Director David J. Allard said.

Allard said the presence of the low-level radioactive items did not pose an immediate health threat to residents of the surrounding areas, but caused concern because hazardous materials could be released into the air if a fire were to occur at any of the warehouses.

“While the threat of a hazardous release has been removed, some quantities of radioactive materials remain in the warehouses,” Allard said. “It is necessary that this process be very thorough to provide confidence that no licensable quantities of radioactive material are left behind.”

EPA concluded its portion of the cleanup work in December at the warehouses in Columbia, Marietta, Maytown and Mount Joy. DEP will work with Strube and its contractors to perform the final cleanup of radioactive instruments and building contamination.

Allard said a schedule for the final portion of the cleanup will be established after DEP reviews and approves plans submitted by the company.

The number of parts removed was considerably higher that the 70,000 first estimated by the company. In all, the eight warehouses contained approximately 58 million parts.

Additional information is available at www.epaosc.net/Strube.

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