Potential source of contamination at Atlas missile site found

By JAMES CHILTON | Wyoming Tribune-Eagle | Published: August 21, 2016

CHEYENNE, Wyo. -- After 15 years of work drilling wells and testing soil and water samples, the Army Corps of Engineers has made a major discovery at a former Atlas D missile site 22 miles west of Cheyenne.

The Corps has been working to determine the extent of groundwater contamination caused by the use of trichloroethylene, or TCE, which was once used to clean the former missile launcher at Missile Site 4, the site in question, as well as other sites around the area.

A new round of drilling this summer in a flame pit at one of the site's former launch and service buildings has uncovered the largest concentration of TCE discovered to date, an order of magnitude more concentrated than at other areas previously surveyed.

Corps officials say the discovery may help to inform them of what options to use to ultimately cleanse the groundwater of TCE, which has been linked to higher rates of liver damage and cancer, if ingested.

(c) 2016 Wyoming Tribune-Eagle. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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