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World Trade Center – Freshkills Landfil Forensic Debris Recovery Operation
June 19, 2017
EE&G was retained as part of a team that included Phillips & Jordan to assist with the WTC Recovery Operations. This included all necessary infrastructures to support the removal of evidence from the WTC debris stream. FBI, NTSB and approximately 30 other governmental entities were engaged to support this recovery mission. In light of the horrific attacks and based on the high-level scientific needs associated with this work, EE&G was selected to perform specialized environmental support services. The primary objective of our mission was to recover human remains, human clothing and possessions, and airplane components from debris stream before it would be landfilled.   This would require the development of an extensive debris sorting program to inspect the debris stream down to small sized pieces. The project was performed on top of the Freshkills landfill, which presented special environmental challenges, as did the WTC debris stream. The health and safety protection of the thousands of workers that included NYPD, FDNY, DSNY, FBI, USACE and numerous private contractors was paramount to the mission. Programs were developed by EE&G to manage environmental control, worker health and safety, and sampling for targeted constituents of concern (including metals, dioxins/furans, radionuclide’s, polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons, PCBs, asbestos, explosive ordinance, explosive landfill gasses, etc.). The technical challenges were many, but were quickly assessed, defined and managed under by EE&G under a multi-agency endorsed plan. EE&G facilitated the preparation of this plan, which joined 32 governmental agencies under one technical approach. EE&G’s template became a model for future multi-agency operations. One of the most amazing challenges took place decades after the completion of the project. Mass litigation was associated with most every contractor, engineer, material supplier, equipment supplier and governmental agencies associated with the project. This legal scrutiny placed EE&G’s work product under extreme technical review. This project shows the technical and professional pedigree that EE&G can bring to a project, as our team was selected to manage the environmental aspects of one of the largest disaster based crime scenes in American history. EE&G work product stood as one of the few reliable technical records associated with the environmental, industrial hygiene and health and safety. It was quickly recognized that the means and methods engaged by EE&G exceeded the standard of care in the industry and set the stage for others to emulate.

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