Defense Base Act Compensation Blog

The Modern Day DBA Casualty

Ill wind blows

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on February 1, 2010

Baghdad burn pit operated by KBR said to cause migraines, breathing problems and rashes

CAMP TAJI, Iraq — One night in mid-January, a shift in the wind sent a sudden flurry of white flakes into a detainee internment facility guarded by soldiers from Houston’s 72nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team.

The Texas Army National Guard troops weren’t witnessing a rare Baghdad snowfall. The flakes drifting from the pitch-dark sky were ash and bits of charred trash belched from an open-air burn pit about 100 yards from the outer walls of the internment facility.

Operated by Houston-based contractor KBR, the pit consumes 120 tons of garbage a day here at Camp Taji, a U.S. military base north of Baghdad. On calm days, noxious smoke billows upward and dissipates into a smog-like haze. When the wind blows, the acrid-smelling fumes pour into towers and yards where about 800 Texas troops from the 72nd keep watch.  Read the full story here

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