Unexploded ordnance found near Knob Noster State Park

For more information: 573-751-1010
Volume 37-288 For Immediate Release: Aug. 28, 2009

JEFFERSON CITY, MO. -- The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers -- Kansas City District, in coordination with the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, is investigating the Former Sedalia Army Air Field Rifle Range, where four unexploded ordnance items were found near Knob Noster State Park and disposed of.  The four unexploded ordnance items were 2.36-inch high explosive anti-tank rockets commonly known as bazooka rounds.  The rockets contained high explosives and were disposed of by the Explosive Ordnance Disposal Unit from Whiteman Air Force Base.

Historically, the facility included a rifle range, a pistol range, and a rocket range that operated from 1943 to 1947.  The nearly 500-acre rifle range is located approximately two miles west of Whiteman Air Force Base and six and half miles southwest of the town of Knob Noster, in Johnson County.  Currently, a majority of the former rifle range is privately owned and a small portion is located on Knob Noster State Park.  At this time, the McAdoo Trail at the state park has been temporarily closed by the Department for trail repair.  

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is planning a response action to detect and dispose of unexploded ordnance in heavily trafficked areas of the site, including recently closed recreational trails in the state park, nearby residences and along access roads.  An investigation will be conducted as soon as practical to characterize the nature and extent of munitions and environmental contamination, to be followed by a study to evaluate actions intended to address the problem.  During this phase the public will be invited to review the suggestions for cleanup and provide input.  

This site is being investigated under the Military Munitions Response Program which is designed to address the remediation of unexploded ordnance or UXO, discarded military munitions, and munitions constituents located on defense sites.  Defense sites are defined by the Department of Defense as locations that are or were owned by, leased to, or otherwise possessed or used by the Department of Defense.  There are approximately 2,000 Military Munitions Response Program sites that have been identified in the United States by the Department of Defense.