Jump to main content.

Fact Sheet

February 2010

Administrative Record File Available for Comment, Karnish Instruments, Inc., Wichita, Kansas


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 7 has compiled the administrative record file for the Karnish Instruments, Inc., Superfund site in Wichita, Kansas. The administrative record file is the official site file and contains technical documents such as the draft Action Memorandum which authorizes Agency funding for site sampling, response and clean-up activities.

EPA invites the public to review the administrative record file during a 30-day comment period from March 1 through April 1, 2010.

The administrative record file can be reviewed during normal business hours at the following locations:

Planeview Community Library
2820 S. Roosevelt Street
Wichita, Kansas

U.S. EPA Region 7
Records Center
901 N. 5th Street
Kansas City, Kansas

Comments should be submitted in writing and sent to: 

Beckie Himes
Community Involvement Coordinator
U.S. EPA Region 7
901 N. Fifth Street
Kansas City, KS 66101

Comments must be postmarked or submitted no later than April 1, 2010.


Radioluminescent paint and radium luminous compounds have been used extensively on watch and clock faces since the early 1900s. The wide use of radium in luminescent paints continued through World War II because the soft glow of radium-produced luminescence made aircraft dials, gauges, and other instruments visible to operators at night.

The Karnish Instruments, Inc. site was located at 4711 E. 31st Street South, Wichita, Sedgwick County, Kansas. The site was the location of an aircraft instrument repair shop in the 1965 through 1969. Instruments included some radium dials and faces.


Radium dial repair shops were set up in the Wichita area soon after World War II to upgrade and repair radium-bearing aircraft instruments. During this repair process, the dials containing radium-bearing paint were removed, the radium bearing paint stripped from the dials with solvent, and the dials repainted. These teardown and dial-stripping operations are potential sources for solvents, heavy metal, and radium contamination of buildings, soil, and ground water.

Karnish Instruments, Inc. used this facility to strip radioluminescent paint containing radium-226 from aircraft instruments. Subsequent occupants also operated an aircraft instrument repair facility at the same location.


If you have questions or need additional information about the site, please contact:

Beckie Hime
Community Involvement Coordinator
Office of Public Affairs
U.S. EPA Region 7
901 N. 5th Street
Kansas City, KS 66101
Phone: 913-551-7253 or
Toll Free: 1-800-223-0425
e-mail: himes.beckie@epa.gov

Local Navigation

Jump to main content.