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West Valley Demolition Marks Important Accomplishment for EM

June 13, 2013 - 12:00pm

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Workers demolish the West Valley Demonstration Project's largest and most complex ancillary facility.

Workers demolish the West Valley Demonstration Project's largest and most complex ancillary facility.

Demolition work is shown in February 2013.

Demolition work is shown in February 2013.

Demolition continues in April 2013 with removal of internal components and concrete cell walls.

Demolition continues in April 2013 with removal of internal components and concrete cell walls.

Debris is removed following demolition.

Debris is removed following demolition.

Workers demolish the West Valley Demonstration Project's largest and most complex ancillary facility.
Demolition work is shown in February 2013.
Demolition continues in April 2013 with removal of internal components and concrete cell walls.
Debris is removed following demolition.

WEST VALLEY, N.Y. EM marked one of its most significant achievements at the West Valley Demonstration Project (WVDP) with the completion of the site’s first nuclear facility demolition this spring.

EM and its contractor, CH2M HILL Babcock & Wilcox West Valley (CHBWV), safely demolished the four-story facility, known as the “01-14 Building,” at the site about 35 miles south of Buffalo. An estimated 100 intermodal containers of waste from the demolition have been shipped for radiological waste disposal in addition to 38 truckloads of non-contaminated construction debris sent to industrial waste landfills for disposal.

“The demolition and removal of the 01-14 Building is an important accomplishment in the progress to decommission the WVDP,” WVDP Deputy Director Craig Rieman said. “This effort showed that robust engineering controls coupled with abundant monitoring techniques can accomplish safe removal of nuclear facilities and will be used to build on future demolition activities.”

The building was constructed in 1971 to support commercial nuclear reactor fuel reprocessing by Nuclear Fuel Services (NFS), the former site operator. NFS ended operations at West Valley a year later, and the building was later converted by EM for sodium bearing waste processing, which continued until 2005.

“The CH2M HILL B&W West Valley workforce was deliberate in the planning and execution of the work, resulting in the safe, compliant demolition of the 01-14 Building,” CHBWV President Dan Coyne said. “Every effort was made to protect the workforce and the environment. We met our objectives and look forward to the future demolition challenges at the WVDP." 

Last year, workers removed hazardous components, isolated and removed facility systems and decontaminated the structure prior to demolition activities. American Demolition and Nuclear Decommissioning, a local small business, completed the demolition. Samples from air monitoring stations located throughout the project area and surrounding communities registered below regulatory limits throughout decontamination and demolition activities. Dust suppression water was contained and sampled prior to discharge through an onsite wastewater treatment process. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and New York State Department of Environmental Conservation periodically inspected the five-month demolition process.

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