Tuesday, June 15, 2004

SPRING VALLEY: 'Tastes Like Burning'

I answered the phone this evening and listened to a recorded message from the D.C. Office of Emergency Management Office warning of a test siren at noon Wednesday in the Spring Valley/Ward Circle area. The reason? Chemical weapons.

D.C. emergency officials are preparing for the worse. As the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers excavates the infamous Lot No. 18 on Rockwood Parkway near American University, it is preparing for the accidental release of old chemical weapons from the era when American University and Spring Valley were used for testing during the end of World War I.

From the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers:
In the unlikely event that, during the planned dig at Lot 18, a chemical release occurs and escapes the engineering controls, the siren will sound to let people in the immediate area know they should shelter-in-place. The residents and university staff who are potentially affected have been notified and taught shelter-in-place techniques. Others need take no action unless directed by fire or police officials.

How comforting. The weapons of mass destruction are right here in Upper Northwest.

More information:
Spring Valley, Project Update [U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District]
"Mustard Gas Concerns Spreading Beyond Spring Valley" [Oculus]


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