EEOICPA Rocky Flats  

Rocky Flats DOE, DOL, EPA, NIOSH, SEC, Documents.

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Rocky Flats Plant

Rocky Flats Plant

Rocky Flats

Rocky Flats is a DOE facility from 1953 to the present so workers are eligible to file both Part B and Part E claims.

Rocky Flats has three Special Exposure Cohorts which cover some workers with specific cancers and at least 250 days of employment for April1, 1952-December 31, 1983.

 Rocky Flats was built in 1951 as a plutonium and uranium component manufacturing center. From 1952 to 1989, the site's primary mission was to fabricate the "pit" that contains the heavy metals and serves as the trigger device for nuclear warheads. Rocky Flats was also responsible for recycling plutonium from scrap and plutonium retrieved from retired nuclear warheads. The final products of this recycling included components and assemblies manufactured from uranium, plutonium, beryllium, stainless steel, and other metals. Production activities included metalworking, component fabrication and assembly, chemical recovery and purification of plutonium, and associated quality control functions. Research and development in the fields of chemistry, physics, metallurgy, materials technology, nuclear safety, and mechanical engineering were also conducted at the site.
In 1989, many of the site's nuclear component production functions were suspended after a safety review temporarily shut down plutonium operations. Following an extensive review, which included considerable independent oversight, a few buildings were authorized by the Secretary of Energy to resume limited plutonium operations: to stabilize plutonium oxide and repackage plutonium for safe storage. In 1989, as a result of the environmental contamination caused by production activities at the site, Rocky Flats was placed on the Superfund National Priorities List. In January 1992, nuclear component production was terminated and the site's primary mission changed from nuclear weapons production to environmental cleanup and restoration.

Throughout the course of its operations, the potential for beryllium exposure existed at this site, due to beryllium use, residual contamination, and decontamination activities.

The Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site is located about 10 miles northwest of Denver, Colorado, on about 11 square miles at the base of the Rocky Mountains. The AEC established the Rocky Flats Plant in 1951 with a mission to manufacture nuclear weapons components from materials such as plutonium, beryllium, and uranium. When operations ceased, large amounts of plutonium, plutonium compounds, and metallic residues remained at the various site facilities. Significant volumes of hazardous and radioactive waste generated during production operations were also present throughout numerous buildings and soil was contaminated, resulting in the site being placed on the National Priorities List. In 1991, DOE's Environmental Management acquired the Rocky Flats Plant and the site transitioned to a new mission: cleaning up the contamination and waste from past production activities.  By the end of 2005, all site facilities were demolished; all waste removed, and contamination reduced to regulatory agreed upon levels. The site will transition to a National Wildlife Refuge  with the U.S. Department of Interior. In FY 2007, the site transferred to DOE's Office of Legacy Management.

Professor John M. Whiteley of the University of California Irvine Campus, teaches a course on Nuclear Environment.   Part of the course reading requirements is a copy of the actual search warrant issued for the raid on the Rocky Flats facility in 1989. The Rocky Flats portion of the class is a joint effort with Ms. Caron Balkany, Esquire of the Rocky Flats Citizens’ Investigation. The Citizens’ Investigation is presented in the non-fiction, non-profit book The Ambushed Grand Jury and her web site is


DOL reports statistics on Rocky Flats claims.  Because Rocky Flats is a DOE site workers are eligible to file claims for both Part B and Part E.  DOL has developed a Site Exposure Matrix for Rocky Flats.



Rocky Flats site transferred to DOE's Office of Legacy Management in 2008 and requires operation and maintenance of remedial action systems, routine inspection and maintenance, records-related activities, and stakeholder support. There is also a fact sheet.



Rocky Flats has an SEC for workers who were monitored or should have been monitored for neutron exposures with a number of work days aggregating at least 250 work days from April 1, 1952, through December 31, 1966.


  • Wikipedia has an article on Rocky Flats.

    Rocky Flats: Overcoming a Toxic Past Series

  • Part 1: LeRoy Moore, Ph.D. was on May 27, 2015
  • Part 2: James Crnkovich and Robert del Tredici was on June 12, 2015
  • Part 3: Harvey Nichols, Ph.D. was on June 23, 2015
  • Part 4: Jon Lipsky, M.A.S. was given on July 22, 2015
  • Letter to Perlmutter

    A constituent's letter to Colorado Congressman Perlmutter on NIOSH's inability to reconstruct dose.


    Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant Oral History Project

    The Boulder Library houses the Maria Rogers Oral History Program, a collection of audio and video interviews with long-time residents and other people knowledgeable about the history of the city and county of Boulder in Colorado. The Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons collection examines the history of the plant from many points of view. It contains more than 150 interviews with workers, managers, regulators, protestors, and people in the surrounding community. Many thanks to the Boulder Library for access to this collection.


    SEC Petition SEC-00192

    Rocky Flats claimants have filed a new Rocky Flats SEC petition.  The premise for the petition is that site profile issues identified in 2007 have not been resolved nor has new exposure evidence been investigated. NIOSH will still need to accept this petition. Stay tuned for developments.  Additional information was requested and added to the original petition.

  • Special Exposure Cohort Petition Document Review, February 3, 2012
  • Petitioners' Response to DCAS White Papers on Falsification and Tritium Follow Up-July 14, 2013
  • Petitioner's Oral Presentation before the NIOSH Advisory Board--July 16, 2013
  • SEC Petition Evaluation Report, September 30, 2013 


    Rocky Flats Videos

    Rocky Flats 25th Anniversary of the FBI Raid

  • What Do We Know about Rocky Flats Workers' Health Issues, 25 Years Later, Part 1
  • What Do We Know about Rocky Flats Workers' Health Issues, 25 Years Later, Part 2
  • What Do We Know about Rocky Flats Workers' Health Issues, 25 Years Later, Part 3
  • What Do We Know about Rocky Flats Workers' Health Issues, 25 Years Later, Part 4

    Buried History
    Deadly Denial Day 1
    Deadly Denial Day 2
    Downwind of Rocky Flats
    Dying on American Soil: The Veterans of Rocky Flats Nuclear Plant
    Dr. Leroy Moore - Rocky Flats Not Safe
    FBI Special Agent John Lipsky, Part 1
    FBI Special Agent John Lipsky, Part 2
    FBI Special Agent John Lipsky, Part 4
    FBI Special Agent John Lipsky, Part 5
    Kristen Iverson - Full Body Burden
    Lipsky -  Strontium and Cesium at Rocky Flats
    McKinley in Committee

    Maria Rogers Oral History Project; Rocky Flats Oral History Project Interviews

  • Anderson, Herman Conrad, 1997
  • Caron Balkany
  • George William Barrie
  • Beacham, John A., 1997
  • Donald Bingman
  • Robert (Bob) Bistline
  • Charles F. Bogard, Part 1
  • Charles F. Bogard, Part 2
  • Herbert Bowman
  • Alice and Ron Brace
  • Robert (Bob) Brady
  • Jacqueline (Jacque) Brever
  • Brever, Jacque, 1999
  • Brever, Jacque, 2004
  • Brown, Janet, 1998
  • Brown, Janet E., 2000
  • Kenneth (Ken) Calkins
  • Robert Card
  • Alfonso L. Cardenas
  • John (Jock) Cobb
  • Cohen, William M., 2012
  • DeGrazio, Bob, 2004
  • DelPizzo, Robert R., 2004
  • Eugene F. DeMayo
  • DiCiero,George, 1997
  • LaVerne (Vern) Dingman
  • Max D. Dixon
  • Ellsberg, Daniel, 1998
  • Ellsberg, Daniel, 2003
  • Elofson, Paula Elofson-Gardine and Susan Elofson-Hurst, 2007
  • Farinola, Frank, 2005 (will not be released until April 6, 2020
  • Felknor, Jerry E., 1999
  • Richard (Dick) Fox
  • Frederick (Fred) Fraikor
  • Franchini, Richard C., 1997
  • Freiberg, Kenneth J., 2011
  • Frend, John Miner, 1999
  • Shirley Garcia
  • John Arthur (Art) Geis
  • Goldfield, Joe and Roslyn, 2002
  • Mark A. Graf
  • Thomas (Tom) Grumbly
  • Guyer, Raymond, 1998
  • Gyosen, Sawada Shonin, 2000
  • Robert (Bob) Haines
  • Hawley, Robert William, 1997
  • Charles (Jerry) Haynes
  • Albert (Al) Hazle
  • Joseph (Joe) Hebert
  • Hill, John E., 1999
  • Rodney (Rod) Hoffman
  • William (Bill) and Judy Hogan
  • Howard Holme
  • Tim Holeman
  • Holst, John L., 1997
  • Duane Hunter
  • Eugene (Gene) Ideker
  • Laura B. Johnson
  • Kassen, Melinda, 1998
  • Kassen, Melinda, 2006
  • Kava, Donald J.
  • Kelly, Jim, 1997-98
  • Kelly, Jim, 1998
  • Kelly, Jim, 2000
  • Bill Kemper
  • Klaver, Ellen Holly, 2002
  • Roman K. Kohler
  • Korkia, Ken, 1998
  • Edd Kray
  • Krieg, Dee, 2004
  • Lamm, Dick, 2005
  • Litaor, Iggy, 1999
  • Litaor, Iggy, 2004
  • Michael (Iggy) Litaor
  • Lockhart, Ann, 2006
  • Pat McCormick
  • Robert (Bob) McFarland
  • Jerry McKamy
  • Charles Church McKay
  • McKinley, Wes, 1998
  • McKinley, Wes, 2004
  • Malone, Patrick, 1998
  • Malone, Patrick A., 2006
  • Markey, Maggi, 2006
  • Miullo, Nat (Nathaniel) J., 2005
  • Moore, LeRoy, 2002
  • Moore, LeRoy, 2009
  • Lee Scott Newman
  • Nichols, Harvey, 1999
  • Pilcher, Jan, 1997
  • Pilcher, Jan V., 2005
  • Rauch, Tom, 1997
  • Rehder, Tim (Timothy) R., 2006
  • Llewellyn (Lou) Richmond
  • Roberson, Jessie M., 1997
  • Rocky Flats Activists, 2006
  • Ross, Richard H., 1997
  • Rothe, Robert, 2003
  • Rountree, Ronald L., 2011
  • Sabec, Donald L., 2006
  • Jerry San Pietro
  • Salzman, Jason, 1999
  • Schonbeck, Niels, 1997
  • Skaggs, David, 1999
  • Stan A. Skinger
  • Solo, Pam, 1996
  • Solo, Pam, 2004
  • Wyman Stacey
  • James S. Stone
  • Stovall, Hank, 2004
  • Sullivan, Kathleen, 1998
  • Tchozewski, Chet, 1997
  • Teague, Iletta, 2004
  • Tempel, Joe, 2006
  • Thompson, Gary, 1997
  • James (Jim) Turner
  • Edward (Ed) Vejvoda
  • Warling, Norman R., 2005
  • Weaver, Jack Dale, 1999
  • Weaver, Jack, 1999
  • Weaver, Jack Dale, 2004
  • Wirth, Timothy E., 2006
  • Wolfson, Morey, 2004

  • Practices of the Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant, Part 1
    Practices of the Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant, Part 2
    Practices of the Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant, Part 3
    Rocky Flats: The Ambushed Grand Jury

    Rocky Flats a Local Hazard - Forever
    Rocky Flats Legacy
    Rocky Flats: Life in the Shadow of a Nuclear Bomb Factory
    Rocky Flats Worker Judy Padilla, Part 1
    Rocky Flats Worker Judy Padilla, Part 2
    Rocky Flats Worker Judy Padilla, Part 3
    Rocky Flats Worker Judy Padilla, Part 4
    Rocky Flats Worker Judy Padilla, Part 5
    Rocky Flats - Weapons to Wildlife, Part 2
    Rocky Flats - Weapons to Wildlife, Part 3
    Rocky Flats - Weapons to Wildlife, Part 4
    Sick Rocky Flats Worker asks Mark Udall for Help at Meeting
    Wes McKinley - One Hell of a Story
    Wes McKinley - Wildlife Refuge?


    Rocky Flats Classified Interviews

    NIOSH conducted classified interviews with former Rocky Flats workers. These interviews are part of the investigation to the new SEC petition.

  • Rocky Flats Interviews with workers 1-5
  • Rocky Flats Interviews with workers 6-10

    Emails obtained through FOIA Request

    In 2005, the United Steelworkers Local 8039 filed a petition to have its workers covered under the Special Exposure Cohort (SEC).  After two years of deliberation the Advisory Board on Radiation and Worker Health, with input from their contractor, Sanford Cohen and Associates, and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) decided that workers exposed to neutron radiation from 1952 to 1966 qualified for the SEC.  For all other workers in other years the Board determined that NIOSH could reconstruct dose with reasonable accuracy.

    Claimants and advocates for the Rocky Flats plant disagreed with this decision.  A Freedom of Information Act Request was filed with NIOSH for all emails related to the investigation of the SEC petition.  NIOSH complied with the request and submitted about 1,000 pages of emails.

    Below you will find selected emails that are either concerning in nature or show the inner debate that is reflected in NIOSH’s final position on the SEC petition.

    D&D Issues

  • 2006, Nov. 7 D&D Internal Dose Statistics email between Little, Meyer, Potter, Ulsh
  • 2006, Nov. 29 Issue specific conf calls email between Fitzgerald, Hoff, Sharfi, Ulsh
  • 2007, Jan. 24 D&D question email between Potter, Ulsh
  • 2007, June 8 More 881 data emails between Potter, Ulsh
  • Dose Issue

  • 2005, March 18 Rocky Flats Plan email between Brackett, Siebert
  • 2006, March 10 Rocky Flats Bioassay Data Count email between Jessen, Vitkus
  • 2006, Aug. 1 Stacker-retriever email between Chew, Ulsh
  • 2006, Aug. 21 Rocky Flats fire email between Chew, Ulsh
  • 2006, Nov. 21 EU vs. DU information website between Hoff, Smith, Ulsh
  • 2006, Nov. 30 Termination Urine Results email between Potter, Ulsh
  • 2007, Jan. 26 U foundry workers email between Potter, Ulsh
  • 2007, Feb. 5 HIS-20 and Skin Dose email between Potter, Savitz, Ulsh
  • 2007, April 16 Wound conference call email between Sharfi, Ulsh
  • 2007, June 1 Second
  • Supplemental Report for RPF SEC Petition Review email between Sharfi, Ulsh

    Rocky Flats Documents

    Rocky Flats History

  • 1999, Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site Profile
  • 2000, Rocky Flats History
  • Miscellaneous Issues

  • 1989, Rocky Flats Asbestos Hazard Inventory
  • 1992, March No Further Action Justification Document Rocky Flats Plant. Vol. 1
  • Status of the Fluidized Bed Unit
  • 1993, Final Report on Recommended Plutonium Release Fractions from Postulated Fires
  • 2005, A Technically Useful History of the Critical Mass Laboratory at Rocky Flats
  • 2005, Feb. 16 Rocky Flats SEC Petition email between Neton, Toohey
  • 2005, July 6 Rocky Flats Contacts email between Meyer, Murray
  • 2005, July 6 Rocky Flats Health Physics Managers email between Jessen, Langsted, Meyer, Murray
  • 2006, March 14 Questions of a few of your comments email between Jessen, Langsted
  • 2006, March 15 2 misc. items email between Jessen, Stempfley, Ulsh
  • 2006, March 20 Changes OK for Table 4-1 email between Jessen, Klein
  • 2006, March 20 Question about bases for petition email between Jessen, Klein
  • 2006, Oct. 4 Rocky Flats ER email between Jessen, Masterson
  • 2007, Dec. 5 Rocky Flats building descriptions email between Kotsch, Ulsh
  • 2010, May 4 Tasking the Board Issue email between Katz, Sundin, Wade
  • Thorium Issue

  • Thorium Interview page
  • 2006, April 18 Alternative Approach email between Allen, Falk, Neton, Ulsh
  • 2006, April 19 Thorium Alternative Approach email between Falk, Neton and Ulsh
  • 2006, Aug. 21 Thorium info email between Chew, Rich, Potter and Ulsh
  • 2006, Sept. 13 Classified meeting email between Griffin, Ulsh, Wade
  • 2006, Nov. 10 Th bioassay at Rock email between Baker, Dean, Meyer, Potter, Raynes
  • 2006, Nov. 14 Thorium Lung Counting During D&D-the final word (I Hope) email between Potter, Ulsh
  • 2006, Nov. 21 Reports email between Chew, Dean, Hoff, Meyer, Ulsh
  • 2006, Dec. 18 Th air monitoring email between Chew, Ulsh
  • 2007, May 15 Thorium Strikes email between Chew and Ulsh
  • 2007, May 25 Rocky conference call (Thorium) email between Ulsh and Wade
  • 2007, May 31 Sampler locations email between Chew, Morris, Potter, Ulsh
  • 2007 June 6 Rad survey email between Potter, Raynes, Ulsh
  • 2007, June 9 Thorium Strikes Occurring in Bldg. 881 not in Bldg. 771 email between Griffon, Morris, Ulsh
  •  Other Rocky Flats Documents

  • Area Reviews of Buildings 707 and 771 Note: Eco-Ed, Inc. provided this Building Review performed at Rocky Flats for Rockwell Manager Dominic Sanchini.  This review was performed in 1988.  Many thanks to Eco-Ed for this important document.
  • National Conversion Pilot Project Stage II, Interim Measure/Interim Remedial Action Decision Document Rev. 4, March 30, 1995
  • Final Sampling and Analysis Plan for The Removal of Polychlorinated Biphenyls, August 1995
  • Health Surveillance of Rocky Flats Radiation Workers
  • Production of Neptunium Metal on a 100-400 Gram Scale, December 5, 1967
  • EPA Interview from October 24, 1989
  • An Assessment of Criticality Safety at the Department of Energy Rocky Flats Plant, Golden, Colorado, July-September 1989
  • Thorium Use at Rocky Flats draft document
  • Overview of Rocky Flats
  • Photo of glove box in building 440
  • Building 444 Basement diagram 1
  • Building 444 Basement diagram 2
  • HAER Building 460
  • Task 1 Report, Identification of Chemicals and Radionuclides Used at Rocky Flats, March 1991
  • Task 2 Report, Selection of the Chemicals and Radionuclides of Concern, June 1991
  • Task 3 & Task 4 Report, Reconstruction of Historical Rocky Flats Operations & Identification of Release Points
  • Task 5 Report, Estimating Historical Emissions from Rocky Flats 1952–1989
  • Task 6 Report, Exposure Pathway Identification & Transport Modeling, May 1994
  • Task 7 Report, Demographic & Land Use Reconstruction of the Area Surrounding the Rocky Flats Plant, April 1994
  • Task 8 Report, Dose Assessment for Historical Contaminant Releases from Rocky Flats, September 1994.pdf
  • A Multispectral Scanner Survey of the Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site and Surrounding Area
  • Finding of No Significant Impact Resumption of Thermal Stabilization of Plutonium Oxide in Building 707
  • MLM-1711(J) Evaluation of Accidental Personnel Exposure to Plutonium-238, Whole Body Counting-June 1970
  • MLM-MU-81-70-0010 Interagency Mechanical Operations Group, Subgroup on Gaging-Oct. 1981
  • Preparation of Actinide Metal Targets using Special Casting Techniques
  • RFP-63 Criticality Measurements on Plutonium Metal Preliminary to the Design of a Melting Crucible
  • RFP-201 Nuclear Safety Experiments on Plutonium and enriched Uranium Hydrogen Moderated Assemblies Containing Boron
  • RFP-248 Industrial Criticality Measurements of Enriched Uranium and Plutonium Part 2
  • RFP-279 The Radiochemical Determination of Americium in the Presence of Plutonium in Urine
  • RFP-325 Two Experimental Sub Critical Arrays of Pu (NO3)4 Solution
  • RFP-336 Some New Devices Used in Plutonium Contamination Control
  • RFP-862 Simplified Metallographic Techniques for Uranium Alloys and Other Metals
  • RFP-871 Plutonium Electrorefinging at Rocky Flats
  • RFP-1136 The Electrolytic Dissolution of Plutonium in Nitric Acid
  • RFP-1248 Desorption from Plutonium Dioxide
  • RFP-1255 Fabrication of Oxide Nuclear Fuel Pellets
  • RFP-1421 Recovery of Niobium from Niobium-Uranium Alloys--An Annotated Bibliography
  • RFP-1424 Glovebox Window Materials
  • RFP-1557 Glovebox Fire Tests
  • RFP-1743 Machining Study of a Uranium-4 Weight Percent Niobium Alloy
  • RFP-2170 The Heat of Formation of Plutonium Hydride
  • RFP-2818 Chemistry Research and Development Progress Report for July 1977 through May 1978
  • RFP-3379 Review of Plutonium Process Chemistry at Rocky Flats
  • RFP-3434 Present Status and Future Direction of Plutonium Process Chemistry
  • RFP-3561 Plutonium and Americium Processing Chemistry and Technology
  • RFP-3610 Computerized Version of the Summary of Binary Phase Diagrams-March 1984
  • RFP-4027 Tritium Permeation in Passivated 304L Stainless Steel
  • RFP-4120 The Right Tool for Machining Beryllium
  • RFP-4154 Ventilating Air Change Rate Versus Particulate Contaminant Spread
  • RFP-4283 Summary of Beryllium Specifications, Current and Historical
  • RFP-4456 The Solubility of Hydrogen in Plutonium in the Temperature Range 475 to 825 Degrees Centigrade
  • RFP-4697 Implementing DOE Guidance for Hazards Assessments at Rocky Flats Plant
  • RFP-4704 The Rocky Flats Plant Independent Safety Review System
  • RFP-4728 Chemical Tracking at Rocky Flats Plant
  • RFP-4808 Calculations for Waste Characterization
  • RFP-4826 Evaluation of Residue Drum Storage Safety Risks
  • RFP-4849 The Deposition of Particulates in Air Sampling Tubes
  • RFP-4878 Fire Hazard Analysis of Rocky Flats Building 776-777 Duct systems
  • RFP-4881 Investigation of Lathel Coolant Spray Fire March 25, 1970 Building 776
  • RFP-4924 Cementation and Solidification of Miscellaneous mixed Wastes at the Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site
  • RFP-4969 Summary Report of Incinerator Plenum Fire Building 771 July 2, 1980
  • RFP-4972 Toxic Chemical Release Inventory at the Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site
  • RFP-5042 Standardized Radiological Dose Evaluations
  • RFP-5094 Cleanup Levels for Am-241, Pu-239, U-234 and U-238 in Soils at the Rocky Flats Environmental Technology site
  • RFP-5197 Retrieval of Buried Depleted Uranium from the T-1 Trench
  • RFP-5225 Rocky Flats Environmental Technology Site Beryllium Characterization Project
  • RFP-5263 Plutonium Solution Storage in Plastic Bottles-Operational Experience and Safety Issues
  • RFP-5265 The Rocky Flats Decontamination and Decommissioning Challenge
  • RFP-5331 History of Uranium-233 Processing at the Rocky Flats Plant
  • RPF-5332 Disposition of Uranium-233 in Plutonium Metal and Oxide at the Rocky Flats
  • Rocky Flats 10 Year Plan-Over 500 Structures to be Demolished
  • Rocky Flats Plant Site Environmental Report January through December 1992
  • Safeguards Personnel Monitor



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     Photos courtesy of DOE and Library of Congress