Sparks Fly at Hearing Over Radiation Cleanup in San Francisco
A representative for naval contractor Tetra Tech was kicked out of a special hearing on the Hunters Point Shipping Cleanup scandal in San Francisco Monday, with supervisors questioning his candor.
“I’m not going to waste our time with this,” a frustrated Supervisor Jane Kim said. Supervisors also had pointed questions for Navy representatives about how all of this was allowed to happen.
Tetra Tech is accused of misleading the county about cleanup efforts at the Hunters Point Shipyard, a Cold War-era nuclear testing site which is being decontaminated and redeveloped for condominiums. Two former employees have admitted to falsifying records and faking soil samples to make it appear as though the company was properly removing radioactive waste from the site. The Navy has since begun reviewing all of Tetra Tech’s data and has found problems with the company to be widespread.
“I was prepared to answer questions that the supervisors posed,” said Preston Hopson, the company’s vice president and general counsel after he was prematurely dismissed. “Unfortunately they did not give us that opportunity; they chose to grandstand.”
The Navy is preparing to retest areas of the shipyard that Tetra Tech had previously said were clean. Tetra Tech has offered to pay for retesting. Many community activists would like to see a complete retesting of the entire shipyard.
In addition to San Francisco supervisors’ concerns, some in Contra Costa have called for an investigation into allegations that the company may have shipped radioactive material to the Keller Canyon Landfill in Pittsburg, California. The company has denied these claims.