Organochlorine Pesticide Contamination

At just about every one of our reunions, there is talk about the contaminants we were subjected to as we went about performing our daily military duties.  Agent Orange is always the main topic of discussion but what about asbestos and other contaminates our families were subjected to?

Those of us who lived in the dorms and base housing were exposed to contaminates that may be responsible for many health problems such as neurological disorders, diabetes, cancer, and birth defects in children. But what can we do about it?  Take a look below at what I found and believe affects all of us who first put the uniform on as far back as the ’50s.

We are the men and women of the U.S. Military

We enlisted/were commissioned in the military to protect our country in its time of need, agreed to sacrifice our body or lay down our life if necessary to protect the country we loved. We did NOT agree to be needlessly poisoned by the very country we swore to protect, and we certainly did NOT agree to the poisoning of our spouses and children.

While the DOD knew of the nature and extent of the contamination at its bases, and the health risks that we were to be exposed to, the DOD never warned us about the contamination. We and our families (including pregnant and nursing mothers, and young children) were forced to work and/or live on one or more of the 148 installations that were to become designated DOD Superfund Sites.  These DOD Superfund Sites are some of the most contaminated parcels of land in the U.S. and the world.

Considering that we had repeated and prolonged exposure to high levels of numerous toxins, it is unreasonable to think that we and our families were not adversely affected. Unfortunately, the average length of time that we were stationed at a base was 4 to 6 years. Because of this, we lived with our families at one contaminated base after another, and the levels of toxins kept building in our systems, often with fatal results, especially for our children.

Our children were the “canaries in the coal mine”

The high number of reported birth defects, miscarriages, stillbirths, infant mortalities, preterm births, low birth weights, childhood cancers, and infertility in women and girls who lived in the DOD’s Base Family Housing may be partly due to the persistent, cumulative nature, and synergistic interaction of organochlorine pesticides. Unfortunately, for a lot of us the average length of time that we were stationed at a base was 4 to 6 years.

Organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) have created environmental, safety, and legal issues for the DOD. Chlordane and other organochlorine pesticides (“OCPs”) were used as pesticides, herbicides, insecticides, termiticides, and rodenticides at virtually every military installation in the U.S. In years past, organochlorine pesticides were so widely used to protect DOD structures and infrastructures that they should be presumed present in ALL structures and infrastructures built prior to the late 1980’s when the use of organochlorine pesticides was banned by the DOD.

As soon as the DOD suspected that it had a problem with these extremely toxic pesticides, the DOD had a moral and legal obligation to test all of its tenantable/habitable structures at its bases. If any building tested positive for unsafe levels of toxins, the DOD should have declared the building unsafe, condemned the building, relocated the occupants to safe housing/schools/offices, remediated the contamination or demolished the contaminated building, and notify the former tenants and building occupants about their possible exposures.

Organochlorine Pesticides (OCPs) Significant Health Effects

According to the US EPA: “Acute and chronic exposure to these pesticides [chlordane, aldrin, dieldrin, and heptachlor] can cause numerous health effects and increase cancer risks. Although dependent on the pesticide and level and duration of exposure, studies on acute and chronic exposures of humans and animals to these pesticides have reported multiple neurologic effects, reproductive/development effects, and damage to the liver and kidneys.”

EPA to Army – Kansas Army Ammunition Plant KSAAP – Pesticides (PDF – 4.15 MB)

Organochlorine Pesticides (OCPs) – ATSDR Toxic Substances Portal

* Aldrin / Dieldrin

  • CAS ID #: 309-00-2, 60-57-1
  • Persistent Organic Pollutant (POP)
  • Affected Organ Systems: Developmental (effects during periods when organs are developing), Endocrine (Glands and Hormones), Hepatic (Liver), Immunological (Immune System), Neurological (Nervous System)
  • Cancer Classification: None
  • Chemical Classification: Pesticides (chemicals used for killing pests, such as rodents, insects, or plants)
  • In 1987, EPA banned all uses.

* Chlordane

  • CAS ID #: 12789-03-6
  • Persistent Organic Pollutant (POP)
  • Affected Organ Systems: Developmental (effects during periods when organs are developing), Hepatic (Liver), Neurological (Nervous System)
  • Cancer Classification: None
  • Chemical Classification: Pesticides (chemicals used for killing pests, such as rodents, insects, or plants)
  • In 1988, EPA banned all uses

* DDT, DDE, DDD

    • CAS ID #: 50-29-3, 72-55-9, 72-54-8, 72-55-9,72-54-8
    • Persistent Organic Pollutant (POP)
    • Affected Organ Systems: Developmental (effects during periods when organs are developing), Endocrine (Glands and Hormones), Hepatic (Liver), Neurological (Nervous System), Reproductive (Producing Children
    • Cancer Classification: NTP: Reasonably Anticipated to be a Human Carcinoge
  • Chemical Classification: Pesticides (chemicals used for killing pests, such as rodents, insects, or plants)
  • Its use in the U.S. was banned in 1972

Endosulfan

  • CAS ID #: 115-29-7
  • Persistent Organic Pollutant (POP)
  • Affected Organ Systems: Endocrine (Glands and Hormones), Hepatic (Liver), Immunological (Immune System), Neurological (Nervous System)
  • Cancer Classification: None
  • Chemical Classification: Pesticides (chemicals used for killing pests, such as rodents, insects, or plants)

* Endrin / Endrin aldehyde:

  • CAS ID #: 72-20-8
  • Persistent Organic Pollutant (POP)
  • Affected Organ Systems: Neurological (Nervous System)
  • Cancer Classification: None
  • Chemical Classification: Pesticides (chemicals used for killing pests, such as rodents, insects, or plants)

* Heptachlor/Heptachlor Epoxide

  • CAS ID #: 76-44-8, 1024-57-3
  • Persistent Organic Pollutant (POP)
  • Affected Organ Systems: Hepatic (Liver), Neurological (Nervous System)
  • Cancer Classification: None
  • Chemical Classification: Pesticides (chemicals used for killing pests, such as rodents, insects, or plants)

* Lindane – Hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH)

  • CAS ID #: 608-73-1
  • Affected Organ Systems: Hepatic (Liver), Immunological (Immune System), Neurological (Nervous System)
  • Cancer Classification: None
  • Chemical Classification: None

Kepone – Chlordecone

    • CAS ID #: 143-50-0, Mirex 2385-85-5
    • Affected Organ Systems: Neurological (Nervous System), Renal (Urinary System or Kidneys), Reproductive (Producing Children
    • Cancer Classification: NTP: Reasonably Anticipated to be a Human Carcinoge
  • Chemical Classification: Pesticides (chemicals used for killing pests, such as rodents, insects, or plants)

Methoxychlor

    • CAS ID #: 72-43-5
    • Affected Organ Systems: Endocrine (Glands and Hormones), Neurological (Nervous System), Reproductive (Producing Children
  • Cancer Classification: None
  • Chemical Classification: Pesticides (chemicals used for killing pests, such as rodents, insects, or plants)

Toxaphene

    • CAS ID #: 8001-35-2
    • Affected Organ Systems: Endocrine (Glands and Hormones), Hepatic (Liver)
    • Cancer Classification: NTP: Reasonably Anticipated to be a Human Carcinoge
  • Chemical Classification: Pesticides (chemicals used for killing pests, such as rodents, insects, or plants)

Mirex

  • CAS ID #: 2385-85-5, Chlordecone 143-50-0
  • Affected Organ Systems: None
  • Cancer Classification: None
  • Chemical Classification: None

Source accessed on 31 December 2015: ATSDR – Substance Listing Page

The DOD Shirks Its Legal Responsibilities

The DOD does not want to spend the money to inform the military personnel, their families, civilian employees, and the surrounding community, of the potential health dangers posed by contamination at its military bases.

“The cost of attempting to identify all these individuals, including the cost of media advertising, would be a significant burden on the [DOD’s] budget …”
Elizabeth L. King, Former Assistant Secretary of Defense for Legislative Affairs

1970 – Chlordane Contamination of Govt Quarters and Personal Property Webb AFB

1970 – The Air Force knew that some of the Webb Air Force Base Family Housing units, located in Big Spring Texas, were contaminated with and the occupants exposed to a large quantity of chlordane. The Air Force knew that due to the method used to apply the pesticide, the building design flaw, that a completed exposure pathway (CEP) existed at a large percentage of its tenantable/habitual structures, exposure of the occupants was possible at ALL of the Air Forces’ Family Housing units. This CEP was confirmed by the by the New York Times news article “Chlordane Problem in Houses on Slabs” dated September 30, 1982.

Furthermore, the Air Force knew that there was NO safe level of Chlordane contamination for infants and young children on the surfaces of floors, personal possessions, or Chlordane aerosol and/or vapors.

A substantial quantity of 2% Chlordane insecticide (emulsifiable solution) was introduced into the heating ducts of two Capehart type housing units at Webb AFB, Texas on 12 March 1970. The insecticide was being used as a subslab termite control agent in accordance with AFM 85-7(8-16), when it was accidentally introduced into the heating ducts formed within the concrete slab. Several hours after the treatments the heating systems were thermostatically activated and distributed the pesticide as an aerosol and vapors throughout the housing units during the night. Page i

On 12 April 1970 a 2% water-chlordane insecticide solution was accidentally introduced into the heating ducts of two Capehart type housing units at Webb AFB TX. These heating ducts consisted of cardboard lined conduits within the concrete slab. Subsequent activation of the heating systems resulted in extensive human exposure and gross pesticide contamination of government housing and personal possessions.
Page 1

… and virtually undetectable floor residues are necessary if children are to inhabit the quarters.
Page 4

Page 4

The presence of children in the family requires residue levels of 7.0 ug/ft2 on walls and ceilings and undetectable floor residues.
Page 6

All clothing and furniture should be decontaminated. Stuffed furniture, which will contain higher volumes of pesticides, should be reupholstered or replaced. All clothing should be dry cleaned twice and the dry cleaning solvent properly disposed of in a sanitary landfill. Children’s toys which can be dry cleaned should be where the cash or sentimental value warrants it, others should be replaced.
Page 8

Chlordane Contamination of Government Quarters and Personal Property Webb AFB TX
USAF Environmental Health Laboratory (AFLC) – 12 March 1970 (PDF – 2.5 MB)

1982 – An Assessment of the Health Risks of Seven Pesticides Used for Termite Control

1978-79 – “… the Air Force in 1978 asked the National Research Council’s Committee on Toxicology, in the Board on Toxicology and Environmental Health Hazards, Commission on Life Sciences, to review the toxicity data on chlordane and to suggest an airborne concentration that could be used as a guideline in deciding whether the housing should be vacated.” … “The Committee on Toxicology (NRC, 1979) concluded that it “could not determine a level of exposure to chlordane below which there would be no biologic effect under conditions of prolonged exposure of families in military housing.”
Page 1

1982 – “Given the available data and the fact that under conditions of prolonged exposure of families in military housing there may be persons, such as [developing fetuses and] young children, who in general are more susceptible to environmental insults, the Committee concluded that it could not determine a level of exposure to any of the termiticides below which there would be no biologic effects.”
Page 46

Page 46

An Assessment of the Health Risks of Seven Pesticides Used for Termite Control
The National Academy of Sciences and the Office of Naval Research – Aug 1982 – (PDF – 3.82 MB)

1981 – Living Area Contamination by Chlordane Used for Termite Treatment

Over the past several years, the United States Air Force has experienced incidences of living quarters contamination with airborne chlordane. The first noted incident occurred in two houses at a southwestern Air Force base (CALLAHAN 1970). … Sampling showed chlordane contamination to be common in those newly constructed houses (unpublished data). …
The most recent incident of chlordane contamination was at a midwestern air base in October 1978. Two ground-floor apartments with subslab heating ducts were involved. …
In the 1979 survey all apartments treated in 1978 showed high concentrations of chlordane with a range of 0.4 to 263.5 pg/M3 (TABLE 2). …
As readily seen, there are many dwellings with detectable chlordane vapor. In this single study, 335 out of 435 treated apartments (77%) had measurable levels of chlordane ranging from trace to 37.8 g/M3. In a previous Air Force survey of 146 houses at various bases, 61% of those houses had detectable levels of chlordane (unpublished data).

Living Area Contamination by Chlordane Used for Termite Treatment
Livingston, J.M. & Jones, C.R. Bull.
Environ. Contam. Toxicol. (1981)
27: 406. doi:10.1007/BF01611040

1981-82 – News Articles – Pesticide Contamination – Military Housing

1981 – “The Army Times and Its companion newspapers reported in today’s editions that thousands of families may have been ex-posed to pesticides while living in military housing. Pentagon spokesman Bill Caldwell said the Defense Department is ‘studying the matter to determine whether or not we should commence a large scale inspection and monitoring program for military housing units’.”

Pesticide May Pollute Military Base Housing
The Palm Beach Post – April 27, 1981

1982 – “A pesticide used to kill termites [chlordane] has leaked into the ventilation systems of more than 1,500 houses at United States Air Force bases across the country, according to studies made public recently by the Air Force. The pesticide, chlordane, was found to have entered heating and air-conditioning ducts in dwellings built on concrete slabs, allowing it to circulate in the air freely.”

Chlordane Problem in Houses on Slabs
The New York Times – September 30, 1982

1996 – Military Housing Privatization Initiative (MHPI)

Congress established the Military Housing Privatization Initiative (MHPI) in 1996 as a tool to help the military improve the quality of life for its service members by improving the condition of their housing. …

MHPI addresses two significant problems concerning housing for military Service members and their families: (1) the poor condition of DoD owned housing, …

Source accesses on 22 January 2016: http://www.acq.osd.mil/housing/

2004 – Guidance for Addressing Chlordane Contamination at DOD Sites

a. What is Chlordane?
Chlordane was a registered use pesticide applied from around 1948 until 1988. Its primary use was for termite control, but other known uses include application to prevent nesting of fire ants around power transformers; as a herbicide to control weeds in turf; and to control insects on lawns, gardens, and food crops (such as corn). So there are potentially many areas on DoD property, including family housing units, where chlordane may be found as a result of lawful application.

b. How Was Chlordane Used?
High concentrations of chlordane may be found around military housing as a result of lawful application for termite control. To control termites, the chlordane was initially applied to soil prior to construction beneath building foundations. Then it was PWTB 200-1-31 DoD’s pest management practice to routinely reapply chlordane every three to five years thereafter by methods such as treating the perimeter of the foundation by spraying with a rod inserted into the soil, by applying via a small trench dug along the foundation, or by injecting the chlordane through holes drilled in flooring at the periphery of walls. Thus relatively high concentrations of chlordane may have accumulated in these areas over time.

Guidance for Addressing Chlordane Contamination at Department Of Defense Sites
U. S. Army Corps of Engineers – 30 September (2004 PDF 0.09 MB)

Defense Base Closure and Realignment (BRAC)

At some point, senior management (rogue employees) within the DOD made a decision that it was more important to cover up the problem at its contaminated bases than help the American Citizens that it harmed. The DOD then went into CYA mode and started using the BRAC to close bases and transfer the responsibility and liability for the contamination on unsuspecting and naive communities.

The Base Realignment and Closure Commission has Closed 133 Bases

The 1988 Base Realignment and Closure Commission – closed 21 bases

    1. Alabama Army Ammunition Plant, AL – EPA ID: AL6210020008 – Superfund sit
    2. Chanute Air Force Base, IL – EPA ID# IL1570024157 – Proposed Superfund sit
    3. Coosa River Storage Annex, AL – EPA ID# AL5213820231 – part of a Superfund sit
    4. Fort Douglas, UT – EPA ID# UT5214020278 – Not NPL
    5. Fort Sheridan, IL – EPA ID# IL2210020838 – Not NPL
    6. Fort Wingate, NM – EPA ID# NM6213820974 – Not NPL
    7. George Air Force Base, CA – EPA ID# CA2570024453 – Superfund sit
    8. Hamilton Army Airfield – – –
    9. Jefferson Proving Ground, IN – EPA ID# IN5210020454 – Not NPL
    10. Lexington Army Depot – – –
    11. Mather Air Force Base, CA – EPA ID# CA8570024143 – Superfund site

 

    1. Navajo Depot Activity, AZ – EPA ID# AZ7213820635 – Not NPL
    2. Naval Station Galveston – – –
    3. Naval Station Lake Charles – – –
    4. Naval Station New York – – –
    5. Naval Station San Francisco – – –
    6. Norton Air Force Base, CA – EPA ID# CA4570024345 – Superfund site

 

    1. Pease Air Force Base, NH – EPA ID# NH7570024847 – Superfund site

 

  1. Presidio of San Francisco, CA – EPA ID# CA7210020791 – Not NPL
  2. Salton Sea Test Base, CA – EPA ID# CA0000362350 – Not NPL
  3. Leased space in Alexandria, Virginia – – –

The 1991 Base Realignment and Closure Commission – closed 40 bases

    1. Beale Air Force Base (Realign)
    2. Bergstrom Air Force Base (Active Component only)
    3. Carswell Air Force Base
    4. Castle Air Force Base
    5. Eaker Air Force Base
    6. England Air Force Base
    7. Fleet Combat Direction Systems Support Activity San Diego (Realign)
    8. Fort Benjamin Harrison
    9. Fort Chafee
    10. Fort Devens – Superfund sit
    11. Fort Ord – Superfund sit
    12. Fort Rucker (Realigned)
    13. Grissom Air Force Base
    14. Hunters Point Annex – Superfund sit
    15. Integrated Combat Systems Test Facility San Francisco
    16. Letterman Army Institute of Research (Disestablish)
    17. Loring Air Force Base – Superfund sit
    18. Lowry Air Force Base
    19. March Air Force Base – Superfund sit
    20. Marine Corps Air Station Tustin
    21. Myrtle Beach Air Force Base
    22. Naval Air Station Chase Field
    23. Naval Air Station Moffett Field – Superfund site

 

    1. Naval Air Warfare Center Warminster
    2. Naval Electronic Systems Engineering Center San Diego
    3. Naval Electronic Systems Engineering Center Vallejo
    4. Naval Electronic Systems Engineering Center
    5. Naval Space Systems Activity Los Angeles
    6. Naval Station Long Beach
    7. Naval Station Philadelphia
    8. Naval Station Puget Sound
    9. Naval Weapons Center China Lake (Realign}
    10. Pacific Missile Test Center Point Mogu (Realign)
    11. Philadelphia Naval Yard
    12. Presidio of Monterey
    13. Richards-Gebaur Air Force Base
    14. Rickenbacker Air Force Base
    15. Sacramento Army Depot
    16. Williams Air Force Base – Superfund site

 

  1. Wurtsmith Air Force Base – Proposed Superfund site

The 1993 Base Realignment and Closure Commission – closed 37 bases

    1. Anniston Army Depot (Realign)
    2. Camp Evans
    3. Fort Wingate
    4. Griffiss Air Force Base – Superfund site

 

    1. Homestead Air Force Base – Superfund site

 

    1. I. Sawyer Air Force Base
    2. March Air Force Base
    3. Mare Island Naval Shipyard
    4. Marine Corps Air Station El Toro – Superfund site

 

    1. Naval Air Station Agana
    2. Naval Air Station Alameda – Superfund site

 

    1. Naval Air Station Barbers Point
    2. Naval Air Station Cecil Field – Superfund site

 

    1. Naval Air Station Dallas
    2. Naval Air Station Glenview
    3. Naval Air Warfare Center Trenton
    4. Naval Aviation Depot Alameda
    5. Naval Aviation Depot Norfolk
    6. Naval Aviation Depot Pensacola
    7. Naval Electronic Systems Engineering Center, Saint Inigoes
    8. Naval Hospital Charleston
    9. Naval Hospital Oakland
    10. Naval Hospital Orlando
    11. Naval Reserve Center Gadsden
    12. Naval Reserve Center Montgomery
    13. Naval Station Charleston
    14. Naval Station Mobile
    15. Naval Station Staten Island
    16. Naval Station Treasure Island – Superfund site

 

    1. Naval Supply Center, Oakland
    2. Naval Training Center Orlando
    3. Naval Training Center San Diego
    4. Newark Air Force Base
    5. O’Hare Air Reserve Station
    6. Plattsburgh Air Force Base – Superfund site

 

  1. Vint Hill Farms Station
  2. Williams Air Force Base (Redirect)

The 1995 Base Realignment and Closure Commission – closed 35 bases

 

    1. Bergstrom Air Force Base
    2. Camp Bonneville
    3. Castle Air Force Base – Superfund site

 

    1. Fitzsimons Army Medical Center
    2. Fort Chafee
    3. Fort Greely (Realign)
    4. Fort Indiantown Gap
    5. Fort McClellan – Superfund site

 

    1. Fort Pickett
    2. Fort Ritchie
    3. Kelly Air Force Base
    4. Letterkenny Army Depot – Superfund site

 

    1. McClellan Air Force Base
    2. Military Ocean Terminal at Bayonne
    3. Naval Air Facility Adak – Superfund site

 

    1. Naval Air Station South Weymouth – Superfund site

 

    1. Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division, Warminster
    2. Naval Air Warfare Center, Aircraft Division, Indianapolis
    3. Naval Reserve Center Fayetteville
    4. Naval Reserve Center Fort Smith
    5. Naval Reserve Center Huntsville
    6. Naval Shipyard, Long Beach
    7. Naval Supply Center, Oakland
    8. Naval Surface Warfare Center Crane Division
    9. Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division
    10. Oakland Army Base
    11. Ontario Air National Guard Station
    12. Red River Army Depot
    13. Reese Air Force Base
    14. Roslyn Air National Guard Station
    15. Savanna Army Depot Activity – Superfund site

 

    1. Seneca Army Depot – Superfund site

 

  1. Ship Repair Facility, Guam
  2. Sierra Army Depot
  3. Stratford Army Engine Plant

Source Accessed on 17 Jan 2016: EPA – Search Superfund Site Information

Source Accessed on 32 Mar 2016: EPA – BRAC installations / Superfund sites

Seeking Justice

When we (the injured) try to seek justice for our injuries through the courts, we are told that our case has no standing because of the Statute of Limitations, Feres Doctrine, and/or the sovereign immunity clause of the Federal Torts Claim Act (FTCA).

  • How can the DOJ/DOD argue that the Statute of Limitations has expired when rogue employees within the DOD conspired to and did conceal the true nature and extent of the contamination?
  • How can the DOJ/DOD argue that the Feres Doctrine bars service members from collecting damages from the United States Government for personal injuries when rogue employees conspired to and did conceal the true nature and extent of the contamination?
  • How can the DOJ/DOD argue that the Federal Torts Claim Act’s (FTCA) sovereign immunity clause prohibits suing the US government and/or its rogue employees who conspired to and did conceal the true nature and extent of the contamination?

Thousands, possibly tens of thousands, of men, women, children, and fetuses are sick, dying, or dead because of the cover-up. When are we going to get justice?

Because there is no Statute of Limitations for murder or manslaughter, when are those involved in the cover-up going to be prosecuted and/or court-martialed for the deaths that they have caused?

Culpability

Are DOD employees culpable for the deaths of American men, women, and children that could have been easily prevented? Yes

Culpable: Bameworthy; involving the commission of a fault or the breach of a duty imposed by law.

Culpability generally implies that an act performed is wrong but does not involve any evil intent by the wrongdoer. The connotation of the term is fault rather than malice or a guilty purpose. It has limited significance in Criminal Law except in cases of reckless Homicide in which a person acts negligently or demonstrates a reckless disregard for life, which results in another person’s death. In general, however, culpability has milder connotations. It is used to mean reprehensible rather than wantonly or grossly negligent behavior. Culpable conduct may be wrong but it is not necessarily criminal.

Culpable ignorance is the lack of knowledge or understanding that results from the omission of ordinary care to acquire such knowledge or understanding.

West’s Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. S.v. “culpable.” Retrieved January 18 2016 from http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/culpable

The DOD’s Modus Operandi (M.O.)

Contamination and Covered-up – MCB Camp Lejeune, NC

The DOD lied to the public and local, state, and federal regulators and congress; withheld records; covered-up deaths that were the result of the contamination at Camp Lejeune; and forced the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), to suppress information about the contamination, health problems, and deaths which were the direct result of the contamination at Camp Lejeune. The sad thing is this happened at almost every one of the 148 DOD facilities that are or were Superfund Sites.

“Semper Fi: Always Faithful” Official Trailer

For information about Camp Lejeune see: See: POGO’s Camp Lejeune Resource Page, POGO’s Blog Camp Lejeune Contamination Cover-up, and The Few, The Proud, The Forgotten If you, a friend, or loved one has been injured or died as a result of the contamination at one or more of the 148 Department of Defense (DOD) Superfund Sites, please watch this trailer and rent or buy “Semper Fi: Always Faithful.”

Pesticides Contamination – Naval Air Station Alameda (NAS), CA

The Navy failed to disclose the presence chlordane and other organochlorine pesticides (“OCPs”)

American International Specialty Lines Insurance Company a general liability insurer, seeks to recover the costs incurred in removing certain hazardous substances–chlordane and other organochlorine pesticides (“OCPs”) – from a portion of a former naval installation. Plaintiff alleges that the United States Department of the Navy (“Navy”) failed to notify the property’s purchaser that chlordane and other OCPs were present on the property and that the Navy failed to remediate the chlordane and other OCPs in breach of two contracts between the parties. Plaintiff further alleges that defendant failed to indemnify plaintiff for its remediation costs pursuant to section 330 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1993, Pub. L. No. 102-484, 106 Stat. 2315, 2371-73 (1992) (codified as amended at 10 U.S.C. § 2687 note (2000)).

http://www.plainsite.org/dockets/7twdnidz/united-states-court-of-federal-claims/american-international-specialty-lines-insurance-company-v-usa/

Pesticides Contamination – Marine Corps Base Hawaii Family Housing

Plaintiffs are military families who have leased housing from Defendants at Marine Corp Base Hawaii between 2006 to the present. Plaintiffs filed a Class Action Complaint alleging that Defendants failed to provide safe and healthy living conditions. Plaintiffs contend that Defendants had knowledge that the soil at the Marine Corp Base Hawaii was contaminated with pesticides. Plaintiffs claim Defendants did not disclose the presence of the pesticides before leasing housing to the military families. Plaintiffs claim they attempted to mediate their disputes with Defendants pursuant to the terms of their lease agreements, but Defendants refused.

Barber, et al. v. Ohana Military Communities LLC, et al., No. 14-00217 (D. Hawaii).

Pursuing Justice for MCBH Families: Progress Thus Far

KVHV Radio News Excerpt about MCBH Contamination

Marine Corps Base Hawaii (MCBH) – Facebook
Military Families Deserve Safe Housing

Pesticides Contamination – George AFB, CA Family Housing

Chlordane and other organochlorine pesticides (“OCPs”) Contamination

George AFB Family Housing – Pesticides Levels

Unsafe levels pesticides at the Family Housing

In 2002, aldrin, chlordane, DDT, dieldrin, endrin, heptachlor, and lindane were detected in the surface soil at the George AFB Family Housing. In 2005 the Air Force advised the City of Victorville that these levels of pesticides at the Base Family Housing may present a danger to human health if soils are inhaled, ingested, or contacted by skin. On 1 October 2007, the levels of chlordane and other organochlorine pesticides’ (“OCPs”) and their breakdown products was so high that the Air Force banned the property and housing for residential use. As of 7 February 2016 the Air Force has failed to notify the thousands of former tenants and building occupants of their possible toxic exposure.

AF to Victorville – unsafe levels pesticides housing (PDF – 64 KB)

1998

In the Public Health Assessment for George Air Force Base the ATSDR made the following statements:

“ATSDR did not identify any completed exposure pathways from George AFB to children at nearby schools or residential areas.” Page 27

“Soil at George AFB does not represent an apparent past public health hazard and does not represent a present or future public health hazard.” Page 28

Extracted – Soil No CEP Children Housing / Schools – George AFB PHA (PDF – 204 KB)

2002

The Air Force knew that the surface soil under and around the George AFB Family Housing was contaminated with hazardous levels of chlordane and other organochlorine pesticides (“OCPs”)

aldrin at 16, 700 μg/kg – 576 x PRG – Sample Depth (ft. bgs): 0.3-0.8
dieldrin at 15,000 μg/kg – 500 x PRG – Sample Depth (ft. bgs): 0.3-0.8
chlordane at 24,100 μg/kg – 15 x PRG – Sample Depth (ft. bgs): 0.5-1
μg/kg: concentrations of chemicals in soil measured in units of the mass of chemical (micrograms, μg) per mass of soil (kilogram, kg)
PRG: residential preliminary remediation goal
ft. bgs: feet below ground surface

George AFB Housing Pesticide Testing – Highest Results Sample Depth (PDF – 95KB)

Extracted Pages AR1773 – George AFB Housing Pesticides Soil (PDF – 147 KB)

2005

“Within the housing area of Former George Air Force Base the pesticides Aldrin and Dieldrin were used to control termites. In 2002 the soil in this area was tested for Organochloride Pesticides and in several locations elevated levels of Aldrin and Dieldrin were detected. In 2005 the Air Force advised the City [of Victorville] that these levels of pesticides may present a danger to human health if soils are inhaled, ingested, or contacted by skin.”

SCLA Soil Testing Project CC12-041 (PDF – 709 KB)

2007

On 1 October 2007, the Air Force placed the following conditional use clause in the George AFB Family Housing quitclaim deed:

“Grantee covenants and agrees that it will not use, or allow others to use, the Property for residential purposes (including mobile or modular homes), hospitals for human care, public or private schools for persons under 18 years of age, nursery schools, or day care centers for children.”

Quitclaim Deed George AFB Family Housing (PDF – 510 KB)

2014

On 14 April 2014, Terri K Crooks won her VA C&P Claim for service connected injury for her exposure to chlordane and other organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) used at George Air Force Base Family Housing and barracks.

“You have submitted new and material evidence to reopen this claim. While not specifically diagnosed during active military service, we have received objective medical evidence from Dr. xxxx linking your condition to symptoms treated while on active duty as we as probable exposure to toxic chemicals. Dr. xxxx provided that after reviewing your service medical records and substantiating documents regarding toxic chemicals used at George Air Force Base, it was his opinion that your condition was at least as likely as not caused by your military service.” …

“… Service connection for bilateral mastectomy, residual of breast cancer has been established as directly related to military service. While not specifically diagnosed during active military service, we have received objective medical evidence from Dr. xxxx linking your condition to symptoms treated while on active duty as well as pro a e exposure to toxic chemicals. Dr. xxxx, provided that after reviewing your service medical records and substantiating documents regarding toxic chemicals used at George Air Force Base, it was his opinion that your condition was at least as likely as not caused by your military service. Your service records confirm your service at George Air Force Base during your period of active military service. There is no objective medical evidence showing that your condition was not caused by your military service. …”

2004-04-22 Terri K Crooks VA C&P Claim George AFB Redacted.pdf

George AFB Schools – Organochlorine Pesticides (“OCPs”) Contamination

On 19 December 2014, the Lahontan Regional Water Quality Control Board (LRWQCB) issued a Land Use Controls Violation to the Air Force. This violation letter addresses the fact that the Air Force did NOT test the schools for dieldrin before the property was transferred to the Adelanto Unified School District and the Air Force ALLOWED the school to reopen WITHOUT testing for contamination from any of the organochlorine pesticides (“OCPs”).

“Concern Regarding George AFB Schools
Another concern related to dieldrin soil contamination is the presence of schools located adjacent to the former housing area; namely, the former George AFB Elementary School and George Junior High (Middle) School. These schools were apparently built during the same time period as the housing units and similar construction procedures may have been followed, including the possible application of pesticides for termite control. These schools were transferred to the Adelanto Unified School District in 1994. The former elementary school is now operated as an adult educational facility called Taylion High Desert Academy. The former middle school is now leased by Adelanto Unified School District to Excelsior Charter School (grades 7-12). Apparently, the soils at these schools have not been tested for dieldrin.”

2014-12-19 LRWQCB Dieldrin Land Use Controls Violation GAFB OT-071 .pdf

2016

As of 17 January 2016, the Air Force has failed to notify the former base personnel, their families, civilian employees, and the surrounding community of their exposure to potentially life-threatening environmental contamination at George AFB’s Family Housing.

George AFB Family Housing – CERCLA §120(h) Deed Restrictions – Chlordane and other organochlorine pesticides (“OCPs”)

The Army and Air Force used the chlordane and other organochlorine pesticides (“OCPs”) to protect buildings (pre-1988) against ground termites and other pests at George AFB including the Base Schools, Family Housing, Barracks, and Dorms.

  • The DOD and the Air Force failed to test for these organochlorine pesticides except at the Base Family Housing Units.
  • The DOD and the Air Force failed to disclose the widespread use of these organochlorine pesticides in the CERCLA §120(h) Deed Restrictions as required by law except for at the Base Family Housing Units.
  • The DOD and the Air Force failed to test the soils at the former George AFB Elementary School and George Junior High (Middle) School for dieldrin.
  • The DOD and the Air Force failed to disclose that dangerous levels of aldrin and chlordane were present at the Base Family Housing Units in the CERCLA §120(h) Deed Restrictions as required by law.

 

  • The DOD and the Air Force failed to disclose the widespread use of these organochlorine pesticides to the ATSDR for its 1998 Public Health Assessment for George AFB. When the ATSDR concluded that there were no completed exposure pathways, the DOD and the Air Force did not correct the ATSDR during the Peer Review / Public Comments period or after the Public Health Assessment for George AFB was published in 1998.

See: George AFB’s Housing and George AFB’s Schools

Quitclaim Deed George AFB Family Housing:

  • Sale Price: $718,685.00
  • Transferred the responsibility and liability for the contamination from the Air Force to the Southern California Logistics Airport Authority (local taxpayers)
  • CERCLA §120(h) Deed Restrictions – Family Housing
  • Pesticide contamination soil and groundwater – Dieldrin or other possible pesticide-related constituents (“Pesticides”)

 

George AFB Family Housing – Quitclaim Deed

II. CONSIDERATION AND CONVEYANCE

WITNESSETH, THAT in consideration of the sum of SEVEN HUNDRED EIGHTEEN THOUSAND SIX HUNDRED EIGHTY FIVE DOLLARS ($718,685.00), and other good and valuable consideration, the receipt of which is hereby acknowledged, the Grantor does hereby release and forever quitclaim to the Grantee all that real property …
Page 2 of 14

VI. CONDITION

B. The Grantee acknowledges that it has inspected, is aware of, and accepts the condition and state of repair of the Property, and that the Property is conveyed, “as is,” “where is,” without any representation, promise, agreement, or warranty on the part of the Grantor regarding such condition and state of repair, or regarding the making of any alterations, improvements, repairs, or additions. The Grantee further acknowledges that the Grantor shall not be liable for any latent or patent defects in the Property, except to the extent required by applicable law.
Page 3 of 14

VII.B. Environmental Restrictive Covenants.

(e) Grantee covenants and agrees that it will not use, or allow others to use, the Property for residential purposes (including mobile or modular homes), hospitals for human care, public or private schools for persons under 18 years of age, nursery schools, or day care centers for children.
Page 5 of 14

VIII. OTHER COVENANTS

    1. Pesticides. The Grantee is warned of the presence of Dieldrin or other possible pesticide-related constituents (“Pesticides”) on the Property in certain portions of the soil and in the upper aquifer of the groundwater, which may have resulted from past applications of pesticides. The Grantee is cautioned to use due care during use, occupancy, and Property development activities that may involve soils containing Pesticides. …
      Page 7 of 14

Grantor: US Air Force
Grantee: Southern California Logistics Airport Authority

Quitclaim Deed George AFB Family Housing (PDF – 510 KB)

Reference

Organochlorine Pesticide:

 

Definitions:

  • Bioaccumulate: to become concentrated inside the bodies of living things
  • Organochlorine pesticides: POPs made out of organochlorine compounds. These organochlorine compounds and there metabolites can cross the placental barrier and accumulate in lipid rich tissues such as human breast and breast milk
  • Persistent organic pollutants (POPs): organic compounds of natural or anthropogenic origin that resist photolytic, chemical and / or biological degradation (UNEP, 1999)
  • Persistent: extremely resistant to natural breakdown processes and therefore are stable and long-lived
  • Pollutants: toxic chemicals which adversely affect human health
  • Synergistic interaction: the effect of two chemicals taken together which is greater than the sum of their separate effect at the same doses

 

Acronyms:

Fair Use Notice

Release to one is release to all

I am not a doctor or attorney, and cannot give medical advice or legal advice.

If you, a friend, or loved one has been injured or died as a result of the contamination at a DOD Superfund Site please follow the steps that are outlined at Get Help.

The views and opinions expressed in this website/articles are those of the authors and
do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of any agency of the U.S. government

Fair Use Notice

Release to one is release to all

I am not a doctor or attorney, and cannot give medical advice or legal advice.

If you, a friend, or loved one has been injured or died as a result of the contamination at a DOD Superfund Site please follow the steps that are outlined at Get Help.

Comments:

  • Joan McKee Simmons says:

 

August 3, 2016 at 7:48 pm

Was George Air Force base already contaminated as early as 1952 or 1953

Reply

 

August 3, 2016 at 9:23 pm

The Atmospheric Nuclear Weapons Testing Radiological Decontamination Centers were at George AFB as early as 1951. See: http://georgeafb.info/george-afbs-atmospheric-nuclear-weapons-testing-decontamination-centers/

Tha Army and later the Air Force uses the highly toxic organochlorine pesticides. See: http://georgeafb.info/george-afb-organochlorine-pesticides-contamination/

Reply

 

  • Michael says:

 

August 19, 2016 at 9:11 am

I was stationed there flying f-4’s. This was back in the 80’s. was there still a contamination risk then?

Reply

 

August 20, 2016 at 8:48 am

Yes! The official AF cleanup did not start until the mid-1980s.

Radiological Contamination
The radiological contamination from the Atmospheric Nuclear Weapons Testing Decontamination Centers had not been addressed.
See:
http://georgeafb.info/george-afbs-atmospheric-nuclear-weapons-testing-decontamination-centers/

Pesticides Contamination
The use of organochlorine pesticides’ (“OCPs”) in the base barracks and housing was not banned until the mid-1980s.
See:
http://georgeafb.info/george-afb-organochlorine-pesticides-contamination/ AND http://www.basefamilyhousing.info/

Burn Pits
George Air Force Base had over a dozen of open-air burn pits and two old style incinerators (without an air scrubber to remove toxic chemicals).
See:
http://georgeafb.info/george-afbs-burn-pits-incinerators/

Industrial Waste – George’s drinking water supply
From 1965 to 1 December 1981 (16 years), the Air Force dumped 5,578,400 gallons of industrial waste containing known carcinogens into the sanitary sewer. The effluent (outflow) from the sewage treatment plant was used to water the golf course. The golf course was NEXT to the water supply wells for George AFB, Adelanto, and private homes, and the former Victor Valley Country Club.
See:
http://georgeafb.info/industrial-waste-completed-exposure-pathways/

Miscarriages, Stillbirths, Birth Defects, And Childhood Cancers
In the early 1980’s the AF was telling women living on George NOT to get pregnant because of the high infant mortality rate.
See:
http://georgeafb.info/george-afb-children/ and http://georgeafb.info/g-a/

Reply

 

  • David E. Sholly says:

 

July 10, 2017 at 11:56 am

Is there a class action law suit pending for those of us that were stationed at George A.F.B . If so who do we contact to be added to the law suit?

Reply

 

July 10, 2017 at 12:48 pm

I have contacted over 100 attorneys over the years trying to get someone to help. I was repeatedly told that our case has no standing because of the Statute of Limitations, Feres Doctrine, and the sovereign immunity clause of the Federal Torts Claim Act (FTCA).

The only ones that possibility have standing to bring a class action lawsuit are the injured children from GAFB. See http://www.georgeafb.info/get-help/

If you or a member of your family was injured at GAFB please join our Facebook page, enter your information into the “Health Survey” at the top of our FB page, and Submit Your Information To The GAFB’s Health Registry. http://www.georgeafb.info/submit-information-gafb-health-registry/

Reply

 

  • post60 says:

 

August 28, 2017 at 2:56 pm

Just caught the end of your appearance on today’s RT/Headline News. Always glad to see conscientious Americans taking corrective initiatives. From what I’ve seen, personally, only locally informed actions are able to develop viable solutions. Keep up the good work.

Reply

 

August 28, 2017 at 4:08 pm

Thanks, I usually ramble when I am in that much pain and should have rescheduled the interview.

Reply

 

  • As A Matter Of Fact says:

 

July 14, 2018 at 9:36 pm

I was born on George Air Force Base in 1979. Both of my parents were stationed there. I have questions, and I want answers. Something is wrong and no one wants to talk about it. My parents won’t even talk about it. I know when something is being hidden and it is important to me to know what happened. I am glad I found this just by doing a google search “What happened to children born on George Air Force Base in 1979.” There are a lot of things I have questions on… from George Air Force Base, to the base we lived on in the Azores, to wherever we were at in New Jersey, to Grissom Air Force Base. Everyone wants to get completely silent when I start asking questions and frankly I’m tired of it. I need some truth here! This is HIGHLY important to me…. it will explain a lot of things. To top it off, I have been through hell and high water even trying to a copy of my birth certificate from California. Everyone else I know from California has no problems with obtaining their birth certificate, but me and one other person I know, who were born on George Air Force Base, has had problems for years.

 

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One thought on “Organochlorine Pesticide Contamination

  1. Thank you for your information. I was born and lived for two years in Germany a lot of course about that situation. But most is the inability to get my medical records from Lowery AFB from 1969 to 1971, I can obtain them from everywhere else. I was very ill, parents told me they said I would die from first it was Lukemia, then an unknown blood disease (reoccuring three more times over three years). I was between 5 and 8. I have had ongoing autoimmune condition since 29 years. Recently since winder of 2020 I have always been thin, I have lost from 98 pounds to 81 pounds. Dr.’s appear lost, except a MDNP, but still it is a battle. I have seen these toxic reports before from the bases, Is there any information from the Ramstein base in Germany? My mom was also given a shot (unknown in 1962) when she was 3 months pregnaunt she had been exposed to German Measals. They did not have shots for that then. It was a military doctor. Trying to put pieces together. I am very ill. Sorry for spelling.

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