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Removal of possible asbestos-containing soil to begin in 08

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- In January, the 460th Civil Engineer Squadron will start removing soil south of the base exchange and commissary that possibly contains asbestos.

Mr. Bruce James, chief of the 460th CES Environmental Flight, said the project will be underway Monday through Friday for about 45 days.

This area of the base housed the former World War II hospital complex. Under this project, the 460th CES will remove about 4,000 cubic yards of soil, some of which may contain small pieces of asbestos building materials and mostly trace levels of asbestos. The soil will be disposed of in a licensed landfill.

The asbestos could have possibly been introduced into the soil during WWII-era facilities' demolition, which left asbestos-containing building materials mixed in the soils. 

While not all of the soils may be impacted with asbestos, leaders decided to take all of the soil to the landfill because the soils were mixed. Testing and dividing the soils would be too costly.

Here is what the base community can expect:

-- Workers will arrive at the work site between 5 and 6 a.m. Equipment will begin operation by 6:30 a.m. and will generally stop for the day by 4:30 p.m. 

-- Noise will include engine noise and backup alarms. 

-- Heavy construction equipment will move the soil from stockpiles into plastic-lined trucks. Dozens of trucks will arrive and depart the site each day.

-- All truck traffic will enter and exit the construction site via worksite gates located between Steamboat Avenue and Telluride Street. The south parking lot at the commissary will be closed during removal times. Only authorized personnel are allowed on the site.

-- Dust suppression will be used at all times to prevent asbestos from becoming airborne and leaving the site. Daily air sampling will monitor the effectiveness of emissions control.

-- Some of the workers will be wearing protective clothing and respirators due to the nature of their duties.

Soil removal plans have been approved by the Colorado Department of Health and Environment.
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