Dublin California Radiation Experiments at Camp Parks


Camp Parks is a Air Force Base that was previously a Navy Base used for radiation experiments in the late 50’s to mid 60’s where they purposely spread radioactive materials onto streets, yards and buildings in order to figure out how to clean up after a nuclear blast. The Navy created dirty bomb incidents all over the Bay Area and trained military personnel from all branches to clean up after a nuclear blast to remove the radiation by scrubbing, firehosing or with street sweepers etc. In the early days, the late 1940’s they thought that fallout was not dangerous, it was not until Operation Castle in 1954 when radioactive fallout fell onto Enewetak Atoll where US military personnel were stationed as well as natives and they got radiation burned from the fallout.

Camp Parks Cobalt 60 Experiments
Camp Parks was used for many radiation experiments Which I will list above when I get the articles up on the site. Fortunately in Complex III tests they decided to limit the amount of radiation they spread onto the grounds, the roads and buildings to .1R per hour which today is a nuclear accident in a nuclear power plant.

Later it would dawn on the Navy that they could use a d
ifferent colored sand and then just count the grains to figure out the amount of fallout.

Camp Parks was used by the US Navy Radiological Defense Lab until it closed in 1969 and then became a testing ground for Stanford University and SRI, Today it is being developed for real estate. The results of many of these tests were published by SRI Stanford Research Institute and the people who are moving into these areas should thank them for their service.

It should be noted that the Alameda County Fire Department burned down several of the buildings at Camp Parks in 2019 to train their firemen. One building of particular note is the gymnasium that was used up to the closing is now gone and I wonder if they burned it down for training because I remember it was used in radiation experiments to simulate raining fallout onto building structures because of its high ceiling. I will post more on this when I find the report.

The following are maps of the test areas that were also used in the Complex I and Complex II studies which used more radioactive materials.
Radiological Recovery of Land Target Components – complex III, W. L Owen (Stanford Research Institute, J.D. Sartor, San Francisco: US Naval Radiological Defense laboratory 1963
The Tests were conducted over a 3 month period to train military personnel. They used Barium 140 with a half life of 12.75 days which decays into Lanthanum 140 with a half life of 1.6 days so after 14 days of placing this on the grounds they would come in and clean it up to determine how ordinary weather would affect the clean up of the radiation. The report is full of charts showing the radiation level as the different materials are cleaned.


5 thoughts on “Dublin California Radiation Experiments at Camp Parks

  1. I was a reserve army medic in the 90’s funny because a year or so after I came down with testicular cancer and it had spread to my lymph nodes


  2. I grew up on a radium site in New Jersey. I lost a friend on the 3rd and another of my friends has pancreatic cancer, announced by one of his sisters to me. In our town so many people have cancer from what the government has done that when I found out about Camp Parks and the URNRDL I had to publish this. You are not alone, and this has to stop. I am sorry you have to deal with all of this, if we could only go back in time and stop them from doing this but we live with this legacy.


  3. I was a child that lived in Komandorski Village while my father was in Vietnam and went to the base elementary school near the radiation testing. I had to walk to and from school every day, exposed and unknowing. I, too, am a cancer survivor.


    1. To give more information to my above comment. I have also searched your blog for any information about all the children that lived in the low income housing, Komandorski, and attended Camp Parks Elementary. Where are these children, now in their 60s and 70s? I am only one those children. The local Catholic church taught Catechism classes there after school also, which I attended. I remember air raids where we had to get under our desks when the sirens went off and also standing in line and getting at least one shot of who knows what. It was scary being a child, without my mom with me, and adults giving shots. I know the school was eventually closed, and demolished, but are there any records of attending children? We were in the thick of Camp Parks radiation and this should be noted as further information about our exposure comes forward and is validated.


      1. The Navy wrote everything down, they make admit to information in other reports and it is just a matter of hunting it down. Don’t be fooled if they issue a denial of an event in the opening summaries of their reports, they usually do that no matter what but the data shows the opposite. In any Navy report they report everything that happened just to cover their bases so you just have to read everything. It is tedious but you can find your answers. Someone wrote it all down and it is just a matter of looking for it.

        the National Archives is in San Bruno, on the former San Bruno Navy Base where unfortunately they did the same thing there, purposely irradiating the base but they did it in the late 1940s so it is still radioactive, they didn’t start using radioactive materials with short half lives until the mid 1950s. they have navy reports piled in boxes that take forever to look at. No order to them. Fortunately Google Books archived them online.

        Google Books downloads are not searchable, you have to run Optical Character Recognition software on them which can be done using the full version of Adobe Acrobat, not the reader. Even then they have problems. Internet Archive has text but it is based on the files generated with adobe acrobat to recognize text. But the Hathi Trust it looks like someone went in and typed it all out so they are the best solution for searching the content online and then finding it at Google Books.

        Good sources to find information:

        For formerly classified government documents the Internet Archive: https://archive.org/details/navpers note this is the Naval Personnel page but if you use the search box in the upper right corner you can search all of the archive. Also watch out for collections of information, as they are usually off point and are a serious waste of time to search through them. Search for base names is best. Usually reports are listed with two versions of each report, so the camp parks reports results will have two responses for each item, they are separate uploads but the exact same document.

        The Hathi Trust online website which I believe is the Stanford University online library https://www.hathitrust.org/

        And the UNT Library, University of North Texas has the original Navy reports which is located about as far away from san Francisco you can get without getting the information from Washington or any of the ports on the East Coast. It proves the Navy was trying to hide all of this. https://digital.library.unt.edu/



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