Removal Assessment & Action at Radiologically Contaminated Superfund Site

From December 2012 to present, Weston provided removal assessment and removal action support to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) during decommissioning of the Safety Light Corporation Superfund Site in Bloomsburg, PA.

The 10-acre facility was associated with legacy issues from the manufacturing of luminous devices that primarily contained radium and tritium. Radiological contamination included building structure and contents, as well as contaminated soils, groundwater, pits, lagoons, and buried objects. Weston and the EPA developed a survey process to clear materials for release from the Site for unrestricted use (free-release) in accordance with Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) Reg. Guide 1.86. Our technicians were then utilized for radiation surveying, assessment, and radiological control. Weston helped to develop a tritium bioassay program, in accordance with NRC Reg. Guide 8.32, for all personnel working at the site and coordinated with the EPA’s Emergency and Rapid Response Services radiation subcontractor to develop/construct tritium bubbler samplers for collection of daily air samples for tritium analysis during demolition activities. Weston also provided structural engineering support to design building stabilization supports and repairs; civil engineering support for on-site waste disposal design; development and preparation of work plans for the demolition of over 10 buildings at the site; and, air sampling for alpha/beta and tritium for worker and public safety.

In summary, Weston:

  • assessed, secured, removed, and assisted in the proper disposal of more than 120 discrete contaminated objects located at six outbuildings;
  • developed a free-release radiation surveying process to decrease debris disposal costs;
  • worked with EPA to develop an on-site procedure to operate a liquid scintillation counter in the collection/analysis of more than 3,000 tritium smear samples, ultimately saving the Government time and money in off-site analytical costs;
  • surveyed and determined approximately 45 tons of waste to be appropriate-for-disposal at a local municipal landfill, thus decreasing the total amount sent to a permit landfill with significantly higher disposal costs; and
  • performed Quantile, Wilcoxon Rank-Sum, and Kruskal-Wallis statistical analysis, in accordance with the Multi-Agency Radiation Survey and Site Investigation Manual, to demonstrate that structural steel at a site building could be recycled.