2000 CPEO Military List Archive

From: Lenny Siegel <lsiegel@cpeo.org>
Date: Thu, 8 Jun 2000 23:03:10 -0700 (PDT)
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: Re: [CPEO-MEF] Camp Shelby UXO Incident
Earlier this week I posted the lead to an news report dealing with the
death of a teen-ager due to the explosion of an anti-tank shell taken
from Camp Shelby, Mississippi. The report raises two interesting issues.

First, though obviously the teen-agers who removed the unexploded shells
and the victims, who were attempting to take them apart, were
responsible, the mother of one of the boys blamed Camp Shelby. I believe
most people would agree. Even when others have engaged in dangerous
activities, people blame the military for creating UXO hazards. Unlike
toxic risks, which may be expressed as risk percentages after the fact,
UXO injuries present a smoking gun. It's clear which institution
produced the munition, and it is held responsible.

Second, Camp Shelby is a National Guard installation, designed - I
believe - to serve week-end warriors. As such, access to areas
containing UXO appears to be more open than at a typical Army training
fort. Regular Army installations may contain more hazards, but they are
patrolled and gated. Those Guard installations that are left open to the
public present a more serious hazard pathway. I would be interested in
hearing to what degree this is the norm - or the exception.

Lenny Siegel

Lenny Siegel
Director, Center for Public Environmental Oversight
c/o PSC, 222B View St., Mountain View, CA 94041
Voice: 650/961-8918 or 650/969-1545
Fax: 650/968-1126

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