Monday, February 13, 2012

Communities Take Aim at Shooting Range Contamination

By: Duane Craig
People who live near the Little Rock Air Force Base can breathe easier knowing lead contamination there has been mitigated, according to this article in the Defense Video & Imagery Distribution System.

The project involved cleaning 15 acres of lead contamination left over from decades of shooting range use. After clearing 18,000 tons of contaminated soil, workers planted 3,000 trees on the newly mulched land. The shooting range operated during the 1960s and 1970s, leaving behind what was described as "extreme levels of lead."

Shooting ranges targeted for causing contamination

Shooting range contamination is being more widely recognized and addressed, and perhaps not surprisingly, the indoor ranges get a fair amount of scrutiny. In one case, reported in a Houston Chronicle article, a shooting range in the basement of a middle school was closed down in Sheboygan, Wis. The fact the range was inside a school was unusual, and even though the shooting club adopted procedures to make sure lead was reduced in the ambient air, that wasn't enough to keep the range open at that location.

In a case near Chambersburg, Pa., a shooting range adjacent to the city's water supply was closed in part because of contamination concerns, but it is being considered for reopening if the appropriate management practices can be put into place, according to a report in Public Opinion.

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