SIMI VALLEY, Calif. – Work crews at the Energy Technology Engineering Center (ETEC) are mobilizing for demolition of 10 buildings at the former nuclear and liquid metals research site in Southern California.
Deactivation work to prepare the structures began the week of June 22, consisting of disconnecting remaining power lines and removing loose debris from the buildings. Demolition is expected to start in July, and to take approximately six months. After more than a decade, active cleanup work has resumed at ETEC.
“The Department of Energy is eager to resume active cleanup at ETEC, and the work will be done safely and effectively,” said ETEC Federal Project Director John Jones.
The 10 buildings comprise the former Radioactive Materials Handling Facility (RMHF) complex, built in 1959 and used to process, package, and ship radioactive and mixed wastes during site operations that ended in 1988.
Demolition of the complex is being conducted under a recently signed agreement between the Department of Energy (DOE) and the State of California. Removing the facilities will reduce potential risk of release of hazardous substances due to wildfires or erosion from severe storms.
DOE and its contractor North Wind will adhere to all safety practices for demolition and transport of the debris outside the State of California to licensed commercial disposal facilities. They further will adhere to all safety precautions and practices recommended to protect workers from exposure to the coronavirus.
The ETEC site is located in Area IV of the Santa Susana Field Laboratory in Ventura County, and ETEC served as a premier research facility. Since the 1980s, more than 200 structures on the ETEC site have been demolished and removed; once RMHF demolition is complete, only eight DOE structures will remain.
DOE will continue to work with the state on the steps necessary to remove the remaining DOE buildings at ETEC, and toward remediation of soils and groundwater at the site.