ECBC investigates chemical weapons buried at Redstone Arsenal

The Chemical Biological Application and Risk Reduction Business Unit of the U.S. Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center announced on April 30 that it will investigate the Redstone Arsenal in Alabama.

The Redstone Arsenal contains a reservoir of chemical weapons that were supposedly improperly buried at the end of World War II. Seventeen sites will be examined.

"The big one that we're chasing now is Redstone," John Ditillo, CBARR chemist, said. "This could be the monster of all cleanup projects. This initial field work will begin later this month and last for approximately 30 days. But the overall, large-scale cleanup effort at Redstone has been projected to last 25 years."

CBARR will use laboratory analysis from state of the art instrumentation that is capable of 24 hour operation. Some of the samples will have to be sent to nearby labs in Pine Bluff Arsenal in Arkansas for more detailed results.

CBARR will work with the Army Corps of Engineers to clean up the sites around Redstone. The COE and CBARR have previously worked together on chemical dumping sites in Hawaii, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Kansas, Guam, Florida, the Virgin Islands and Washington, D.C.

"We've been very busy the last couple of years and there's very few people who can do this kind of work," Ditillo said.