Padre Island residents notified of Formerly Used Defense Sites

Feb. 9 some residents on the Island may have got a letter that states:

CORPUS CHRISTI (KIII NEWS) - Some may know that during and after World War II Naval Air Station-Corpus Christi airmen practiced dropping bombs in an area known as B-1 on North Padre Island.

Feb. 9 some residents on the Island may have got a letter that states:

"This sight was specifically used from 1941 to 1947 and was used as a bombing area for pilots." 

The letter was sent to residents currently living in a Formerly Used Defense Site.

"We are in the bullseye, and that's interesting because our neighbors received there earlier than we did," Laura Murphy said.

The Army Corps of Engineers said there are over 5,000 formerly used defense sights across the nation.

"Based on risk there are some sights that we may not get to clean up for the next several years, so we want to make sure that some property owners are aware of the potential of munitions to be found on their property," Tracie Fambrough said.

Some residents said they've lived in the area for years and it's the first time they've received a letter.

"It's really no surprise if you look at the history of the island. We knew that it was a bombing range during the war I didn't know that it was..they were bombing our backyard," Dan Chavez said. 

According to the Army Corps of Engineers, there is no need to worry.

"The government has completed a site investigation, and we went out there, and we did not find any munitions or practice bombs," Fambrough said.

Most of the nearby land is still developing, and residents said builders would most likely be the ones to notice anything.

"You have to dig pretty deep for these foundations and all the equipment and everything that goes on these lots when they're being built," Carol Kovens said. "If there was something wrong we would have found it." 

Even though the Army Corps of Engineers said it's not likely they ask if residents do come across one of the ammunition to practice the three R's: Recognize, Retreat, Report. If you see one don't touch it, walk away and call the police. 

For more information call the Formerly Used Sites Information Center toll-free number at 1-855-765-3837.

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