11/13/18 – WHAT WE DON’T KNOW ABOUT SANTA SUSANA NUCLEAR SITE AFTER WOOLSEY FIRE (article contains photos)
The Woolsey Fire has burned a good portion of the former Santa Susana Field Lab, which was once home to a nuclear reactor and numerous rocket tests. The site is still riddled with radioactive waste and other toxic compounds.
BACKGROUND: A 2012 EPA report doesn’t paint a pretty picture. Approximately one out of every seven samples contained “concentrations of radioactive materials exceeding background levels.” More than 80% of these were man-made radionuclides. This echoes a 1989 Department of Energy report found that there were contaminants in both the soil and the plants.
11/13/18 — FROM CBS https://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2018/11/13/santa-susana-field-laboratory-woolsey-fire/
Local, state and federal agencies have inspected the Santa Susana Field Laboratory and found that the nuclear Superfund site was not impacted by the Woolsey Fire.
—FROM Department of Toxic Substances Control
This is an update as of 1:30 a.m. on Nov. 9, 2018
The Woolsey Fire burned through a portion of the Santa Susana Field Laboratory (SSFL) yesterday. At this time, it is no longer burning within the SSFL site, and is moving away from the site. There is a fire station on the SSFL site, and both Ventura County and Los Angeles County fire personnel are assisting in the response. The fire agencies responding to the fire have consulted with their own Hazardous Materials coordinator who is familiar with the site and determined the fire did not present any risks other than those normally present in a wildfire situation. DTSC is actively monitoring the fire. DTSC emergency response staff has been in contact with staff at the Ventura County Certified Unified Program Agency. Our scientists and toxicologists have reviewed information about the fire’s location and do not believe the fire has caused any releases of hazardous materials that would pose a risk to people exposed to the smoke. READ COMPLETE UPDATE
SANTA SUSANA FIELD LABORATORY IS A SUPER-FUND SITE
The Santa Susana Field Laboratory is a complex of industrial research and development facilities located on a 2,668-acre (1,080 ha) portion of the Southern California Simi Hills in Simi Valley, California. It was used mainly for the development and testing of liquid-propellant rocket engines for the United States space program from 1949 to 2006, nuclear reactors from 1953 to 1980 and the operation of a U.S. government-sponsored liquid metals research center from 1966 to 1998.
The site is located approximately 7 miles (11 km) northwest from the community of Canoga Park and approximately 30 miles (48 km) northwest of Downtown Los Angeles. Sage Ranch Park is adjacent on part of the northern boundary and the community of Bell Canyon along the entire southern boundary.
Throughout the years, about ten low-power nuclear reactors operated at SSFL, in addition to several “critical facilities” that helped develop nuclear science and applications. At least four of the ten nuclear reactors had accidents during their operation. The reactors located on the grounds of SSFL were considered experimental, and therefore, had no containment structures.
The site ceased research and development operations in 2006. The years of rocket testing, nuclear reactor testing, and liquid metal research have left the site “significantly contaminated”. Environmental cleanup is ongoing.
THIS LOCATION IS A SUPER FUND CONTAMINATED SITE.