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Google Earth Plug-in: Palomares, Spain - US Broken Arrow - 17 Jan 1966 (overlay)

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On January 17, 1966 a B-52 bomber of the USAF Strategic Air Command carrying four 1 Megaton hydrogen bombs crashed into a KC-135 tanker while refuelling. Of the four hydrogen bombs that it carried, three fell near the Spanish fishing village of Palomares, while the fourth was lost at sea. Two of the bombs parachutes failed, causing them to undergo non-nuclear, high explosive detonation and their content of fissile material was scattered over an area of about 2.3 km2 consisting of agricultural land, urban land and uncultivated land. No one was injured in the accident but a large area used for cultivating tomatoes had to be decontaminated. The bomb lost at sea was recovered eighty days later. 1,400 tons of contaminated material were excavated and sent to South Carolina for disposal.

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