Lake City Army Ammunition Plant

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
A worker at Lake City Army Ammunition Plant packs two cans of newly manufactured 5.56×45mm NATO ammunition into a wirebound crate. (ca. 1998)
Headstamp of a .50 caliber cartridge casing made at the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant in 1943 and recovered from the Sahuarita Bombing and Gunnery Range in 2012.

Lake City Army Ammunition Plant (LCAAP) is a 3,935-acre (15.92 km2) U.S. government-owned, contractor-operated facility in northeastern Independence, Missouri, that was established by Remington Arms in 1941 to manufacture and test small caliber ammunition for the U.S. Army. The facility has remained in continuous operation except for one 5-year period following World War II.[1][2] As of July 2007, the plant produced nearly 1.4 billion rounds of ammunition per year.[3] In addition, Lake City performs small caliber ammunition stockpile reliability testing and has ammunition and weapon testing responsibilities as the NATO National and Regional Test Center. LCAAP is the single largest producer of small arms ammunition for the United States Armed Forces.[3][4]

Remington Arms operated the plant from its inception until 1985, when operations were taken over by the Olin Corporation.[2] Since April 2001, it has been operated by Alliant Techsystems (ATK), later known as Orbital ATK after a 2015 merger between Orbital Sciences Corporation and parts of Alliant Techsystems. Orbital ATK was acquired by Northrop Grumman in 2018[5] and is now known as Northrop Grumman Innovation Systems.

Finished outer boxes of the commercial pack, each containing 1,800 rounds, are palletized before the entire pallet is shrink-wrapped for shipment.


The manufacturing capabilities of the plant include: Small arms cartridges; components such as percussion and electric primer; pyrotechnics; and small caliber ammunition (5.56 mm; 7.62 mm; .50 caliber and 20 mm). The plant also performs reliability testing on small caliber ammunition (5.56 mm; 7.62 mm; 9 mm, .22 caliber; .45 caliber and .50 caliber) and demilitarization and disposal of small caliber ammunition and explosives.[6]


LCAAP was established in December 1940 as the Lake City Arsenal, with production beginning in 1941. It was the first of 12 small arms plants run by the Army.[6]

An accidental explosion in a primer manufacturing facility at the plant in April 2017 killed one worker and injured four others.[7]


LCAAP is housed on 3,935 acres (15.92 km2) with 458 buildings, 40 igloos and storage capacity of 707,000 square feet (65,700 m2).[6]

Hazardous waste contamination[edit]

Historically, LCAAP waste treatment and disposal occurred on-site and relied on unlined lagoons, landfills, and burn pits. The plant generated large quantities of potentially hazardous wastes and hazardous substances, including solvents, oils, greases, explosives, radionuclides, perchlorates, and heavy metals. As a result of the extensive contamination, the site was added to the United States Environmental Protection Agency's National Priorities List in 1987, and it remains a Superfund site to this day.[1]


  1. ^ a b "Lake City Army Ammunition Plant Lagoon Archived 2011-02-06 at the Wayback Machine". National Priorities List. Environmental Protection Agency. 30 January 2008.
  2. ^ a b "Lake City Army Ammunition Plant".
  3. ^ a b Lardner, Richard. "Ammo makers prepare for drop in demand". USA Today. 23 July 2007.
  4. ^ "ATK Receives $52.2 Million to Modernize the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant". Press Release. AmmoLand. 30 January 2008.
  5. ^ "Orbital ATK will become Northrop Grumman's fourth business sector".
  6. ^ a b c Information Provided by the Joint Munitions Command
  7. ^ Rizzo, Tony. "ATF concludes no crime involved in fatal explosion at Lake City ammunition plant." Kansas City Star. April 14, 2017.

External links[edit]

 This article incorporates public domain material from the United States Government document "Joint Munitions Command".

Coordinates: 39°06′4″N 94°15′47″W / 39.10111°N 94.26306°W / 39.10111; -94.26306