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(Daily Mail)   Remember that time in 1961 when America almost nuked itself with some hydrogen bombs over North Carolina? Good times   (dailymail.co.uk) divider line 67
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7888 clicks; posted to Main » on 11 Jun 2014 at 11:23 AM (33 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-06-11 09:47:08 AM  
Duke? Nuke 'em   ;p
 
2014-06-11 10:37:32 AM  
Did they ever find them?

/dnrtfa
 
2014-06-11 11:19:21 AM  

kimwim: Did they ever find them?

/dnrtfa


I heard some farmer dug them up and handed them over to some Palestinian turrists who recruited an American native turrist to help smuggle the newly worked bombs into the Super Bowl to help start WW3...or maybe that's just a bad plot device.
 
2014-06-11 11:26:14 AM  
It's such a compelling story that it gets reported on the internet several times a year. So yes, I remember. We all do. And we aren't likely to forget any time soon because the internet keeps bringing it up.
 
2014-06-11 11:27:51 AM  
North Carolina? Better luck next time, America.
 
2014-06-11 11:28:58 AM  
This again.  We've talked about this before on Fark.  Yes, until about 1970, when the USAF decided carrying bombs in the bomb bay, or drop-ready on fighter jets was stupid, we had dozens of acccidents.
 
2014-06-11 11:29:16 AM  
Is it already time for the content farms to churn out this story again? Time sure does fly.
 
2014-06-11 11:29:19 AM  

kimwim: Did they ever find them?

/dnrtfa


You're thinking of the lost nuke off Tybee Island that we still can't find.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1958_Tybee_Island_mid-air_collision
 
2014-06-11 11:29:21 AM  
Next time, we'll get it right.
 
2014-06-11 11:30:19 AM  
A cow was killed and residents of Albuquerque terrified when a B-36 aircraft transporting a nuclear bomb from Texas to New Mexico fell through the bomb bay doors from 1,700 feet and detonated

A B-36 carrying a nuclear bomb fell through the bomb bay doors? What was carrying it?
 
2014-06-11 11:30:28 AM  
How often has this same incident shown up on fark?  Or did something similar happen several times?
 
2014-06-11 11:30:39 AM  
North Carolina? Damn, too bad we didn't.
 
2014-06-11 11:31:42 AM  

cgraves67: It's such a compelling story that it gets reported on the internet several times a year. So yes, I remember. We all do. And we aren't likely to forget any time soon because the internet keeps bringing it up.


I think this story gets an automatic greenlight, probably something to do with the proximity of the location to Duke.
 
2014-06-11 11:32:12 AM  
 
2014-06-11 11:33:28 AM  
The recovered one bomb that was basically stuck in a tree by its parachute.  The other bomb plunged into the earth, disintegrating into pieces without detonation.  When they tried to recover the important bits out of the ground, ground-water flooding made it impossible.  The thermonulclear stage with the uranium is still buried underground to this day.
 
2014-06-11 11:33:36 AM  
Holy fark.....  I went into the article thinking "Bah....  those things don't just go boom, even if droppped, they have to be triggered'  Then I read the article and learned that the damn thing HAD triggered and all but one safety failed and it COULD have popped.

That would have been brutal.... 3.8 megatons... that's a BIG boom.
 
2014-06-11 11:34:03 AM  

DoctorWhat: How often has this same incident shown up on fark?  Or did something similar happen several times?


Several accidents resulting in lost nukes. Some we found. Some we didn't.

And every few months somebody throws together a "remember when we had that nuke go missing" article about the things.
 
2014-06-11 11:34:23 AM  
Luckily Superman stopped the missile from exploding, though he could not save Lois Lane.
 
2014-06-11 11:34:56 AM  
I was stationed at Goldsboro (Seymore Johnson AFB) in the 1970s. It was still a SAC base with alert bombers. Because of the 1961 incident, we had to regularly go through what were known as Broken Arrow Exercises. These were to simulate an inbound uploaded bomber that was expected to crash land. After we finished prepping the flight line and getting all flyable assets into the air. Personnel were to evacuate to an area 1000 feet away from the runway. I kid you not. A bomber with two H bombs is going to crash and the devices may detonate. The entire base would have been vaporized and a crater a mile wide would have been created. So we knew it was a put your head between your legs and kiss your ass goodbye situation and that the evacuation outside of the 1000 cordon was pure BS.
 
2014-06-11 11:35:03 AM  

J.Shelby: Here is a prior one:
http://www.fark.com/comments/7942081/Classified-documents-reveal-tha t- US-almost-detonated-a-nuclear-bomb-over-North-Carolina-in-1960s-thinki ng-a-healthy-dose-of-radiation-might-be-beneficial-to-gene-pool-there


Yes, we need newer bomb scare stories!

Come on Russia, you know you want to show up in the international papers...
 
2014-06-11 11:36:20 AM  

Slaxl: A cow was killed and residents of Albuquerque terrified when a B-36 aircraft transporting a nuclear bomb from Texas to New Mexico fell through the bomb bay doors from 1,700 feet and detonated

A B-36 carrying a nuclear bomb fell through the bomb bay doors? What was carrying it?


Apparently cows have bomb bay doors, but using them is fatal.
 
2014-06-11 11:36:46 AM  

MassD: Holy fark.....  I went into the article thinking "Bah....  those things don't just go boom, even if droppped, they have to be triggered'  Then I read the article and learned that the damn thing HAD triggered and all but one safety failed and it COULD have popped.

That would have been brutal.... 3.8 megatons... that's a BIG boom.


24 megatons.
 
2014-06-11 11:40:44 AM  

JackieRabbit: I was stationed at Goldsboro (Seymore Johnson AFB) in the 1970s. It was still a SAC base with alert bombers. Because of the 1961 incident, we had to regularly go through what were known as Broken Arrow Exercises. These were to simulate an inbound uploaded bomber that was expected to crash land. After we finished prepping the flight line and getting all flyable assets into the air. Personnel were to evacuate to an area 1000 feet away from the runway. I kid you not. A bomber with two H bombs is going to crash and the devices may detonate. The entire base would have been vaporized and a crater a mile wide would have been created. So we knew it was a put your head between your legs and kiss your ass goodbye situation and that the evacuation outside of the 1000 cordon was pure BS.


The 1,000 feet isn't in case of a nuclear yield, fission or fusion.  Its in case of a conventional yield only.  That's the standard radius for such a mess.
 
2014-06-11 11:41:24 AM  
The information made available last year also revealed how the safeties on the second bomb, which landed near Farro, failed - all except for one.

I thought this was a repeat, but I wasn't sure if there were MORE bombs being revealed here... I remember reading about how 4 of the 5 safeties failed.

Wow...
 
2014-06-11 11:41:41 AM  

cgraves67: It's such a compelling story that it gets reported on the internet several times a year. So yes, I remember. We all do. And we aren't likely to forget any time soon because the internet keeps bringing it up.


This has to be at least the 6th Fark thread on the topic
 
2014-06-11 11:42:19 AM  

mjones73: MassD: Holy fark.....  I went into the article thinking "Bah....  those things don't just go boom, even if droppped, they have to be triggered'  Then I read the article and learned that the damn thing HAD triggered and all but one safety failed and it COULD have popped.

That would have been brutal.... 3.8 megatons... that's a BIG boom.

24 megatons.


2.4 megatons.  The US never made a 24 megaton deliverable.   That was a mis-post by the press at the time.
 
2014-06-11 11:44:07 AM  
Oh look, it's this thread again.
What is the half-life on this story?
 
2014-06-11 11:47:15 AM  
'We were told there was no possibility of these weapons accidentally detonating, yet here's one that very nearly did,' he added."

Except that the safety equipment worked and nobody was hurt. The reason the things have four safety mechanisms in place is in case the first three fail. OMG lets all freak out over an avoided accident that happened half a century ago. "700 significant accidents" and not one resulted in an accidental detonation. Sounds pretty safe to me.
 
2014-06-11 11:47:49 AM  
The Air Force also bombed Mars Bluff South Carolina in the 50's. Luckily the nuclear payload wasn't attached the the bomb when it accidentally fell out the the airplane. It was only a "conventional" explosion, but it left a hell of a hole.

Just goes to show, a hundred years after the war, the north was still attacking the south.

THE SOUTH SHALL RISE AGAIN!!!!!!111!!!!11!!!!!1!

and then get nuked.
 
2014-06-11 11:48:19 AM  
In 1961 the Atomic Energy Commission (which then controlled the nuclear element of the bombs) managed to get SAC to start reporting accidents involving nuclear weapons. Even then, SAC held many back with the national security clause. The reported cases? Around 150.

-Bombers would not only fly with armed and ready nukes, they also had more bombers on the tarmac, "cocked", meaning that they were loaded and ready to go. Just push the start button.

-Operation Chrome Dome was the name for the 24/7 flying deterrent.

-This all ended in 1969 with the loss of at least four H-Bombs over Spain. All four were found (one two miles deep off the coast) but the US ended up digging up and shipping something like 2 million tons of soil to Nevada because of contamination concerns. This incident ended Chrome Dome.

-Another fun time was the Thule Alert Bomber. See, SAC flew a single B-52 over Thule Greenland, which was an ideal place to detect incoming Soviet bombers. In the mid-1960s it crashed while fully loaded. For a few minutes everybody in Omaha thought the balloon had went up and moved to make the Northern Hemisphere uninhabitable until contact with Thule was restored. Greenland wasn't supposed to have nukes. Once the secret was out they replaced the B-52 with a modified KC-135 and no weapons.

-Honestly it's a miracle nothing happened. All Airman Bumblefark had to do was drop something or accidentally arm something  and BOOM. We all start shooting.

-Read up on SIOP-62 and it's revision in 1990. The guy changed with revising it couldn't believe how much ordnance would get dropped on single targets. Like most Soviet targets would get multiple missiles and bombs dumped on them at different times during the execution of the SIOP. In the early '60s we had something like 6,000 warheads and thousands of bombers. The Soviets had 90 bombers of similar capability. Parity would not occur until the '70s when the Soviet ICBM arsenal worked out the kinks in missile development.
 
2014-06-11 11:49:43 AM  
I think I'm pretty well informed about history and politics but this is the first I heard about this. I was just a wee 1 years old living in Irvington, NJ at the time.
 
2014-06-11 11:50:16 AM  

Mike Literous: The Air Force also bombed Mars Bluff South Carolina in the 50's. Luckily the nuclear payload wasn't attached the the bomb when it accidentally fell out the the airplane. It was only a "conventional" explosion, but it left a hell of a hole.

Just goes to show, a hundred years after the war, the north was still attacking the south.

THE SOUTH SHALL RISE AGAIN!!!!!!111!!!!11!!!!!1!

and then get nuked.


Still is a "live" warhead about 20 miles east off Tybee Island (or 35 SSE of Hilton Head).  Live is in quotes because it never was confirmed that had been armed.
 
2014-06-11 11:55:29 AM  
 
2014-06-11 11:55:37 AM  
This, and many other "incidents" covered in scary detail in:

ecx.images-amazon.com

An absolute must read.
 
2014-06-11 11:56:13 AM  

To The Escape Zeppelin!: "700 significant accidents" and not one resulted in an accidental detonation. Sounds pretty safe to me.


Jesus H. Christ.
 
2014-06-11 12:12:27 PM  
I live less than a twenty minute drive from that farm. I guess I should hoard bottlecaps.

There's also a church near the farm that has an MGM-1 Matador in it's parking lot.
 
2014-06-11 12:18:46 PM  

DoctorWhat: How often has this same incident shown up on fark?  Or did something similar happen several times?


Both, actually.  The list of "lost" nuclear warheads is astonishingly long.
 
2014-06-11 12:31:37 PM  
Actually, I remember that time because it appears on the main page every 3 months.
 
2014-06-11 12:33:27 PM  

J.Shelby: This again.  We've talked about this before on Fark.  Yes, until about 1970, when the USAF decided carrying bombs in the bomb bay, or drop-ready on fighter jets was stupid, we had dozens of acccidents.


They knew it was stupid since they first started doing it, they just didn't have any alternative until the ICBM was invented.
 
2014-06-11 12:36:03 PM  

trotsky: In 1961 the Atomic Energy Commission (which then controlled the nuclear element of the bombs) managed to get SAC to start reporting accidents involving nuclear weapons. Even then, SAC held many back with the national security clause. The reported cases? Around 150.

-Bombers would not only fly with armed and ready nukes, they also had more bombers on the tarmac, "cocked", meaning that they were loaded and ready to go. Just push the start button.

-Operation Chrome Dome was the name for the 24/7 flying deterrent.

-This all ended in 1969 with the loss of at least four H-Bombs over Spain. All four were found (one two miles deep off the coast) but the US ended up digging up and shipping something like 2 million tons of soil to Nevada because of contamination concerns. This incident ended Chrome Dome.

-Another fun time was the Thule Alert Bomber. See, SAC flew a single B-52 over Thule Greenland, which was an ideal place to detect incoming Soviet bombers. In the mid-1960s it crashed while fully loaded. For a few minutes everybody in Omaha thought the balloon had went up and moved to make the Northern Hemisphere uninhabitable until contact with Thule was restored. Greenland wasn't supposed to have nukes. Once the secret was out they replaced the B-52 with a modified KC-135 and no weapons.

-Honestly it's a miracle nothing happened. All Airman Bumblefark had to do was drop something or accidentally arm something  and BOOM. We all start shooting.

-Read up on SIOP-62 and it's revision in 1990. The guy changed with revising it couldn't believe how much ordnance would get dropped on single targets. Like most Soviet targets would get multiple missiles and bombs dumped on them at different times during the execution of the SIOP. In the early '60s we had something like 6,000 warheads and thousands of bombers. The Soviets had 90 bombers of similar capability. Parity would not occur until the '70s when the Soviet ICBM arsenal worked out the kinks in missile development.


-I don't think that you needed to separate all those points

-No really, these bullet points could have been better served with simple sentences

-Or maybe even paragraphs, who knows.  But bullet points?  Come on.
 
2014-06-11 12:57:18 PM  

gopher321: kimwim: Did they ever find them?

/dnrtfa

I heard some farmer dug them up and handed them over to some Palestinian turrists who recruited an American native turrist to help smuggle the newly worked bombs into the Super Bowl to help start WW3...or maybe that's just a bad plot device.



cdn.pastemagazine.com

"We're not selling the nuclear weapon back to the U.S., we're charging a finder's fee"
'That's called a ransom, mother'
 
2014-06-11 01:06:04 PM  
Though not nuke, I remember this vividly (I was 6 years old at the time).  It was about a mile from my home.  I saw that mushroom cloud from our back yard.  We were evacuated and when we got home, our windows were broken, foundation cracked and we had craters in our yard from schrapnel.  Good times.
 
2014-06-11 01:10:50 PM  

JackieRabbit: I was stationed at Goldsboro (Seymore Johnson AFB) in the 1970s. It was still a SAC base with alert bombers. Because of the 1961 incident, we had to regularly go through what were known as Broken Arrow Exercises. These were to simulate an inbound uploaded bomber that was expected to crash land. After we finished prepping the flight line and getting all flyable assets into the air. Personnel were to evacuate to an area 1000 feet away from the runway. I kid you not. A bomber with two H bombs is going to crash and the devices may detonate. The entire base would have been vaporized and a crater a mile wide would have been created. So we knew it was a put your head between your legs and kiss your ass goodbye situation and that the evacuation outside of the 1000 cordon was pure BS.



That's an ok distance if the conventional explosives go off and spread debris.  Actual detonation requires extremely precise timing in a series of events to occur, on the order of nanoseconds.  I'm skeptical that even those old bombs with less rigorous safeties would have a major explosion in a crash that jostled things out of alignment.  Maybe a 'fizzle' though.
 
2014-06-11 01:13:16 PM  

moeburn: J.Shelby: This again.  We've talked about this before on Fark.  Yes, until about 1970, when the USAF decided carrying bombs in the bomb bay, or drop-ready on fighter jets was stupid, we had dozens of acccidents.

They knew it was stupid since they first started doing it, they just didn't have any alternative until the ICBM was invented.


The ICBM was developed in 1957.  By 1969 the entire Southern missile field was developed.  We stopped because we bombed Franco's farmers, it got publicly ugly, he threw the nukes out.
 
2014-06-11 01:14:23 PM  
I grew up in Blacksburg, Virginia.   The nearby Radford Army Ammunition Plant, source of most of the Army's TNT, used to blow up now and then.  I remember one time it was so loud it shook Blacksburg Middle School.  None of us had to be told what'd happened.
 
2014-06-11 01:16:25 PM  

Mike Literous: THE SOUTH SHALL RISE AGAIN!!!!!!111!!!!11!!!!!1!
and then get nuked.


24.media.tumblr.com
 
2014-06-11 01:22:15 PM  
Hello. This is Jeff Goldblum. I'm not a scientist but I played one in Jurrasic Park. Remember that Chaos Theory guy? That was me.

I've played a lot of scientists actually. When they need somebody to talk crap, they hire me. I put a virus in an alien computer once. The guy talking crap about Evolution in the movie of that name was not me, it was Orlando Jones. A lot of people think we look a bit alike but I don't see it. For starters, we are different races.

Any hoo.

Chaos Theory is often represented as a sort of Higher Murphy's Law. Anything that can go wrong will, with bells on. Pull the other one, it's made of chocolate.

But in reality, this is an over-simplification, with some small nut of truth in it.

For example, that time the US Government attempted to nuke North Carolina. Nobody in the conspiracy theory circle is going to believe it was an accident because accidents never happen and because the US Government has super human powers for evil. But the tiny gap between what happened (nothing much) and what could have happened (Armageddon as the left hand fails to communicate with the right hand and vice versa) shows how chaotic the world really is.

In the real world, Chaos is not Murphey's Law write large. It is sensitivity to minute variations in initial conditions. And when an atom bomb gets an unexpected jolt and is switched from OFF to ON, that is one heck of a variation in initial conditions.

Climate and weather work exactly like that--they are supposed to be predictable, with the stuff that has happened in the past happening over and over again in the future in such a way that you can use statistics to predict the future from what has happened. But in the real world neither weather nor stock markets nor history ever repeat themselves exactly, and the tiniest variations in initial conditions not only change the results but change them in enormous ways, producing what Nicholas Nassim Taleb, a successful stockbroker and author, calls "Black Swans". A black swan may be good, it may be bad, but it is the pudding that proves, or tests, the rule.

Almost all of the money ever made or lost in the stock market has been made or lost on about five days of each year. Banks crash, hurricanes become monster killers, and the weather changes in ways it has never changed before. These chaotic shifts can lead to what real scientists call phase shifts, which is the change from the Old World we knew to a New World that is completely new and scary.

Well, I have to go read some more really bad movie scripts to see what kind of dumbass scientist I am going to be playing next. I bet I have an estranged family and I have to get back together and work to save them and the world despite everybody thinking I am a shiathead and a loser.

At least some things do not change.
 
2014-06-11 01:25:20 PM  
Don't forget, the USA nuked itself hundreds of times from 1945-1992:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_nuclear_weapons_tests_of_the_Uni t ed_States
 
2014-06-11 01:38:54 PM  
General Sherman reminds me of Commander Vimes from Sir Terry Pratchett's Diskworld. I know the actor that most Americans see playing the role of Stoney Face Sam  and I knew the name of the British actor that Sir Pterry had in mind but to my mind's eye, it is good old General Tecumseh Sherman who has to keep the Trolls and the Dwarves from endangering the City he loves like a biatch mistress and protects with a ferocity that otherwise extends only to Lady Sybil and Sam Junior.

Things could always have been worse. His brother was a Member of Congress.

They are both my fifth cousins, five times removed. I am also related to General Robert E. Lee but quite remotely. My family tree is extraordinarily laden with Americans for a French Canadian. Usually it is the other way 'round, with Americans discovering that their family trees have an alarming number of French Canadians hidden in the upper branches, but then my Mother is descended from Pre-Loyalists, Early Loyalists, Late Loyalists, Pseudo-Loyalists and Ex-Loyalists who thought it over and went back on their decision to try Nova Scotia's bracing climate for a while.

I loved the documentary General Sherman's March to the Sea. It was a touching, wise and sympathetic portrayal depiction of Southerners, perhaps the best ever with the possible exception of that documentary on Jackie K's weirdo decayed aristocratic relations.

But it didn't make me sorry Sherman was a Sonovaczarivitch. Sometimes even Liberals have to admit that a Sonnovabiatch is the man to get the job done. He seems to have a hard time of it, hence the booze. In that he is very like the younger Sam Vimes--will power and duty holding the man together where even a bottle could not. But I am glad that poor old Cumpy didn't have to work in the shadow of the Bomb. It might have been the ruination of him. Cump was his family's nickname for him. Don't ask me what the hell it means.
 
2014-06-11 01:45:52 PM  

UNC_Samurai: I live less than a twenty minute drive from that farm. I guess I should hoard bottlecaps.

There's also a church near the farm that has an MGM-1 Matador in it's parking lot.


Yep, kept my aircraft at GWW when we were at Camp LeJeune. Flew over the farm many a time.

Also lived near Damascus, AR when we were out at LRAFB. I've been so happy to live near legendary nuclear sites.

*eye roll*
 
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