naval air station, whidbey island (ault field)


The Naval Air Station (NAS) at Whidbey Island, Ault Field is a Department of the Navy 8,000-acre facility and consists of Ault Field and the Seaplane Base. The Seaplane Base is also on the National Priorities List (NPL) and is being addressed in conjunction with Ault Field. The station was commissioned in 1942, and the air station's current mission is to maintain and operate Navy aircraft and aviation facilities and to provide associated support activities. Since the 1940s, operations at the air station have generated a variety of hazardous wastes. Site investigation studies have confirmed contamination of soil, sediments, and groundwater throughout the installation. Contaminants include polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), heavy metals, chlorinated solvents, polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), and pesticides. The Ault Field site has been divided into four subsites for the purpose of managing cleanup activities. Subsite 1 consists of Area 6, a known landfill, and Area 5, a suspected disposal area. Subsite 2 is made up of the Walker Storage Barn, Pesticide Rinsate Area, Clover Valley Fire School, Western highlands Landfill, Area 3, and 1969-1970 Landfill. Subsite 3 encompasses Area 16, the runway ditch complex. Subsite 5 includes Area 1, the Beach Landfill, Area 52, Jet Engine Test Cell, and Area 31, the former Runway Fire School. An additional 26 site areas were investigated as part of the Hazardous Waste Evaluation Study to determine if these areas required more extensive investigation. As a result of this study, a fourth subsite was established, which consists of the beach landfill and Jet Engine Test Cell. The site lies on shallow and sea-level aquifers. These aquifers provide drinking water to approximately 21,000 people located within three miles of the site. Local surface water bodies are used for recreation and irrigation. One surface water intake, approximately 6,500 feet from the site, is used to irrigate 66 acres of farmland. A freshwater wetland is located within 500 feet of Ault Field. Site Responsibility: This site is being addressed through federal actions.

Hazardous Ranking Score

48 / 100

A score of 28.5 or higher qualifies a site for the Superfund National Priority List.

Regional Contact

Region 10
Phone: (800) 424-4372

Contact Region



Site Inspection
Preliminary Assessment
Final Listing On NPL

Contaminants & Health Effects

      Endocrine Disrupter
      Reproductive Toxin
      Persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic


        African American
        American Indian and Alaska Native
        Native Hawaiian


        People living
        within a 1 mile radius


        Average Income


        Occupied homes

        Potentially Responsible Parties

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