Officials announce plans to remove lead contamination at Tyndall Elementary

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BAY COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Tyndall Elementary School is more than 60 years old. A World War II aerial gunner school training range sat on the land before that.

According to Tyndall Air Force Base officials, the range left lead contamination on parts of the property.

"When we shot clay pigeons for WWII, the lead came from those pellets and some those materials that are in the clay," said Tyndall Air Force Base Colonel Brian Laidlaw.

In 2009, base officials spent $5.5 million to clean up the area and put up a fence to keep students away from any contamination that may remain.
Monday, base officials realized there was a problem.

When Hurricane Michael hit in October, it knocked down the fence. so they rebuilt the barrier. However, they put the fence in the wrong place. This left a small section of the contaminated area accessible to students.

Now, base and Bay District School officials are working to fix the problem before school begins this month.

"They will be putting up a new fence," said Bay District Schools Superintendent Bill Husfelt. "Before school starts, Colonel told me this last night, they'll be putting the fence up closer to the schools and probably further away from the problem."

Bay District School leaders say they're tracking down students who attended Tyndall Elementary School after Hurricane Michael to see if they were exposed to lead. Officials say they want to let the public know, students have a low chance of coming down with lead poisoning because they have to be exposed to the lead for long periods of time.

For more information about the lead contamination at Tyndall Elementary click the link attached to this article.

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