Blue Grass managers are planning a busy 2019 while keeping the primary focus on safety.
“Our main objective is to start up both facilities safely and smoothly through a crawl-walk-run approach,” said Jeff Brubaker, site project manager, Blue Grass Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant. “This is the culmination of many years of planning, design, construction and testing and the input of many expert people. It’s an exciting time to be here.”
Plans are for the Static Detonation Chamber to start processing the Blue Grass mustard munitions in the summer and for the main plant to destroy GB projectiles in the fall. The project completed a hiring drive in 2018 to staff both facilities for operations.
“One benefit of being one of the last two destruction sites in the U.S. is having access to a lot of talented people who have been part of the chemical demilitarization program for years,” said Ron Hink project manager, Bechtel Parsons Blue Grass. “We have also focused on hiring locally and have built a trained, dedicated workforce to start and operate these facilities. Our priority, above all, is to make sure these workers are safe each and every day.”
Safety will not be overlooked at any point during preparation for the start of processing, Hink said. All activities have procedures that must be followed and all workers have the ability to pause work if they see unsafe conditions.
“Our overall goal is to make the world a safer place by destroying the aging chemical weapons,” Brubaker said. “That begins with safety from the very first step.”