Scrap steel theft on the rise

28 Jun 2011 | Lance Cpl. Victor Barrera

Every day, Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune is constructing, tearing down or renovating a building. With this comes a lot of scrap steel, which can be sold for a nice profit, or can be recycled or reused by the base. However, base officials have been seeing a rise in scrap steel thefts across the base, something that can have a negative effect on recycling projects.

Although a lot of the scrap metal may look like trash, it is still considered government property and as such is subject to certain regulations.

At times, units actively search for scrap metal vendors to come to their location and dispose of scrap metal, not knowing that the metal, be it steel armor or communications equipment, require special procedures.

Units can call the base landfill to receive bins in which they can place their scrap steel. There are even steel parts that, although they may not be needed in one unit, can still be put to work in a different unit.

Individuals have also been seen attempting to steal scrap metal. Theft of government property can result in a non-judicial punishment or further punishment.

The money that the base’s Qualified Recycling Program makes from recycling scrap metal is used to further the recycling efforts, which in the end make Camp Lejeune a more environmentally friendly base.

Recycling officials urge units and Marines not to steal or call in scrap steel collectors, units can instead call David Balog, the recycling manager at the landfill who can assist units in properly disposing of scrap steel.

To reach David Balog, call 451-4214.