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Fact Sheet

June 2012

EPA Removal Action to Begin, Standard Precision, Inc., Wichita, Sedgwick County, Kansas


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 7 will conduct a removal action at the former Standard Precision, Inc. site located at 4105-4129 West Pawnee Street in Wichita, Kansas. The primary contaminant of concern is radium-226.

The removal action will begin in July 2012. Radium-contaminated soils and other material will be excavated from the property and replaced with clean soil. Contaminated material will be shipped to an approved off-site facility. This cleanup action is expected to be completed in August 2012.


Radioluminescent paint has been used extensively on watch and clock faces since the early 1900s. The wide use of radium in luminescent paints continued through World War II because the soft glow of radium-produced luminescence made aircraft dials, gauges, and other instruments visible to operators at night.

Radium dial repair shops were set up in the Wichita area soon after World War II to upgrade and repair radium-bearing aircraft instruments. During this repair process, the radium-bearing paint was stripped from the dials with solvent, and the dials were repainted. This process resulted in releases of solvents, heavy metal and radium into buildings, soil and ground water.

The Standard Precision, Inc. site was located at 4105-4129 West Pawnee Street in Wichita, Sedgwick County, Kansas. The site was the location of an aircraft instrument repair shop in the 1960s and 1970s. Instruments included radium dials and faces.


During investigations conducted by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment and EPA, radium-226 was detected at levels above the EPA and Nuclear Regulatory Commission screening level. Workers at 4105-4129 West Pawnee Street, residents and passersby could be exposed to radium.


The cleanup removal action will quickly address the potential threat to human health and the environment that is posed by the radium-contaminated soil and other materials at this portion of the site. The objectives of the removal include:


EPA encourages the community to review the Administrative Record file, which will be available in early August at the following locations:

Wichita Department
of Environmental Services
1900 East 9th
Wichita, Kansas

EPA Region 7
Records Center
901 N. 5th Street
Kansas City, Kansas

If you have questions or need additional information, please contact:

Beckie Himes
Community Involvement Coordinator
Office of Public Affairs
U.S. EPA Region 7
901 N. 5th Street
Kansas City, KS  66101
Phone: 913-551-7253
Toll-free: 1-800-223-0425
Email: himes.beckie@epa.gov


Megan Schuette
On-Scene Coordinator
Superfund Division
U.S. EPA Region 7
901 N. 5th Street
Kansas City, KS  66101
Phone: 913-551-7630
Toll-free: 1-800-223-0425
Email: schuette.megan@epa.gov

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