In December of 1972, a chemical explosion blew out two windows in the plutonium facility near the shore of Nuclear Lake, west of Pawling, New York. I taught physics at the Trinity Pawling School in Pawling during the late 1970s until 1981. Several times I explored the UNC (United Nuclear Corporation) property, which was gated, but not closed to public access. I also went to a couple of meetings of the Nuclear Lake Management Site Clearance Subcommittee, which was trying to make sense of the available data surrounding the accident and the current state of the property.
This diagram appeared in Nuclear Lake: A Resource in Question, prepared by the Nuclear Lake Management Site Clearance Subcommittee, published in January 1982.
The lure of an abandoned nuclear research facility where an accident had occurred was too strong to resist. I explored the property several times and took these photographs in 1981.
Plutonium Facility, 1981 photo by Ed Bacher
This photograph shows the plutonium building from the west, looking toward the lake.
Nuclear Lake Window, 1981 photo by Ed Bacher
Unfortunately, I don't remember if this window was in the plutonium building, but I suspect so.
Concrete Slabs, Nuclear Lake 1981 photo by Ed Bacher
These slabs and other debris littered the woods in 1981.
The previous post shows the property in March, 2008. The buildings are gone, though large clearings remain where the buildings stood.
Update (15 September 2011):