Secrecy Envelops Kiski Valley Nuclear Waste Site

"PARKS, Armstrong County -- From the road, it looks like any fenced-in patch of trees and overgrown grass. Passersby have to look closely to notice the signs warning of radiation, or to see the Homeland Security guards patrolling with rifles slung over their backs."

"Debbie Secreto lives in the Kiskimere neighborhood of 50 homes that borders the site, translated in bureaucrat-speak as the Parks Township Shallow Land Disposal Area. To her, it's the old NUMEC nuclear waste site, a field where she played as a child -- a field that later became Exhibit A in a lawsuit alleging carcinogenic side effects, and now begins its latest chapter as a Cold War relic bringing 21st-century concerns to the surface.

The guards arrived in May, a following of protocol after cleanup of the nuclear waste buried there discovered greater numbers of "complex" elements like plutonium and uranium than were anticipated. The Army Corps of Engineers, which was leading the cleanup, halted operations and asked for a federal review of whether it was the best agency to continue the job.

Can they tell the public why such a level of security is needed?"

Erich Schwartzel reports for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette August 12, 2012.

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 08/13/2012