Montana National Guard to Locate, Remove Unexploded Munitions

The Mountain Standard reports that the ongoing removal of unexploded military ordnance that has been buried in Deer Lodge Valley for more than 50 years is continuing.

The ordnance could still be a threat to hikers and hunters. The Standard says Montana National Guard talked to county and city officials on Wednesday, about the site investigation they are conducting. The aim is to determine the scope of unexploded military ordnance (UXO), left over from the Guard’s tank and artillery training exercises on the Montana State Prison Ranch.

There is concern there could be unexploded 90mm shells, bazookas, rifle grenades and small arms ammunition. The Guard says it is working to find and remove them, then detonate them safely.

There have been previous cleanup operations, since 1980, but the work is not complete and the location of the cleaned-up areas is not marked.

The National Defense Authorization Act Military Munitions Response Program was authorized by Congress in 2002, requiring an inventory of all current and former military sites and determine cost and liability and develop a cleanup plan. There are 34 such sites in Montana.

See the complete story at mtstandard.com