DOE To Perform Ordnance Clearance Sweeps For Pre Manhattan-Era Munitions In Bayo And Rendija Canyons

EM-LA News:

A multi-disciplinary team led by the Department of Energy Environmental Management Los Alamos Field Office (EM-LA) will begin setting up for ordinance clearance sweeps Sept. 27.

A comprehensive sweep will take place at the head of a tributary to Bayo Canyon on land primarily owned by the Los Alamos County, while similar work will be performed in Rendija Canyon on 15 acres owned by the United States Forest Service. Both areas were used in the mid-1940s by the US Army; the area at the head of Bayo Canyon was a former Bazooka firing range, while Rendija Canyon was an ammunition impact zone.

The comprehensive sweeps are being conducted to determine if any munitions and small explosives remain and, if so, to evaluate whether or not they are creating a hazard or unacceptable risk to human health and the environment.

Work in Bayo Canyon will be performed on six acres near San Ildefonso Road, while work in Rendija Canyon will take place in a steep amphitheater north of Rendija Road, approximately half a mile north of the Los Alamos Sportsmen’s Club.

The sweeps are expected to last approximately two weeks, with minimal impact to nearby trails activities anticipated for the duration of the project. Intermittent road closures may occur on San Ildefonso Road while work at the head of Bayo Canyon is conducted. 

“The investigations of the two areas are an important part of the Department of Energy’s ongoing commitment to the safe cleanup of Los Alamos National Laboratory legacy work sites,” Federal Project Director Cheryl Rodriguez said.

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