Soldier Firing Depleted Uranium Shell


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Effects of Depleted Uranium on Your Body
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Known DU Locations in Hawai‘i:

Also: Stryker Brigade Uses DU
read more

Tail Assembly
Found at Schofield

Events Leading to DU Weapons Discovery:

  • Jan 6, 2006: Aloha ‘Aina breaks news that they've obtained the Sept 9, 2005 memo under theFreedom of Information Act. See Advertiser Article.
  • Dec, 2005 Responding to constituent concerns, the Military assures Congressman Ed Case that there is no storage or use of DU weapons in Hawai‘i. Did the military lie to him?
  • Sept 9, 2005: Memo from contractor to US Army Engineering and Support complaining that the presence of DU device fragments at Schofield.
  • March 2005 Army's draft environmental impact statement for Makua denies any use of DU weapons in Hawai‘i.
  • August 2004(?): Army uses DU device at Schofield.

Do we trust the military who lied to us about the presence of DU in Hawai'i to tell us the truth about their tests? Ask Gov. Lingle to request independent testing of Hawaii areas downwind of Stryker Brigade live fire exercises.


Why is DU Dangerous?

The Pentagon says it is only mildly radioactive...MISLEADING
  • A lump of DU sitting in front of you poses little risk since your clothes and skin stop its alpha-particles.
  • But Alpha particles inside the body are deadly.
  • Uranium in dust form – from burning and impact of artillary shells – is highly toxic.
  • Inhaled, it causes bone and lung cancer among other ailments.
  • Ingested DU causes heavy metal poisoning.

DU Protective Gear
120mm shell
  • All DU is contaminated with its daughter products which produce beta and gamma radiation (although in very small quantities).

  • DU from depleted fuel rods (as opposed to DU left over from the enrichment process) is also contaminated with Plutonium...the most toxic element known to man.

  • DU is a heavy metal. Like lead, it can contaminate water, land and air leading to heavy metal poisoning. Its radioactive properties aside, it is a nasty chemical for human bodies.

How to Identify DU Bullets: 

The A-10 fires a 30mm round about the size and shape of a cigar.  The Harrier jets fire a slightly smaller 25mm round. These rounds are essentially solid DU.  Since approximately 25 percent of DU rounds fired from aircraft hit the intended target, many DU rounds may be found in or near target vehicles or equipment, on the soil surface, or buried under the soil surface. 

These rounds may be slightly deformed from impact.  They may be covered in a black uranium dust, as DU rounds corrode over time.  Intact DU rounds have a radioactivity of approximately 200 mrem/hour, which can be detected through use of radiation detection devices.

DU shells


How to Identify DU Contamination:  

When a DU round impacts a target, between 10 and 70% of the mass of the round burns, releasing an extremely fine uranium dust.  Most of this dust is respirable in size (less than 5 microns) and insoluble.  The presence of black DU dust and entry holes on the outside of a vehicle are telltale signs of a DU impact. 

In the event a DU impact causes an explosion or fire, it may be more difficult to identify DU contamination in and around a vehicle.  Over time, wind, water, and human contact may resuspend or scatter DU dust from the surface of a vehicle, further impeding identification efforts. 

The only positive way to identify DU contamination is to survey equipment and soil with radiation detection devices capable of detecting alpha radiation.

DU penetrated Tank

How to Avoid Exposure: 

  • Stay away from any vehicle, equipment, or structure which you believe may have been hit by DU rounds or Tomahawk cruise missiles. 
  • Do not pick up or collect DU rounds found lying on the ground. 
  • Inform NATO forces and/or relief workers (in writing, if possible) you suspect DU contamination of an area, and mark the area as potentially contaminated. 
  • If you are in a potentially contaminated area (such as near destroyed tanks), wear respiratory protection and gloves at a minimum, and adhere to good personal hygiene (wash frequently). 
  • Visually examine clothing and skin for deposition of black DU dust and decontaminate as needed. 
  • If you suspect you were exposed to DU dust or fragments, contact a physician or relief worker and arrange for a 24-hour urine test to be analyzed for U-238, U-235, U-234, and creatinine.
30mm DU Round

Do you want something like radioactive lead paint dust spread all over our ‘aina?  Forever?
Please write your Representatives:

Sen Daniel Inouye             Sen Daniel Akaka             Rep Mazie Hirono             Rep Neil Abercrombie             Gov. Linda Lingle

If anyone in your ‘ohana is in the military, please warn them to stay away from expended DU weapons locations.
Experience has shown that even protective gear is not particularly effective against breathing the fine dust that results from impact and burning of DU rounds.
Last Update September 24, 2007