Wow: Nukes Almost Accidentally Dropped in NC in 1961
Indeed, they were dropped, just not exploded. Via the BBC: US plane in 1961 ‘nuclear bomb near-miss’
A four-megaton nuclear bomb was one switch away from exploding over the US in 1961, a newly declassified US document confirms.
Two bombs were on board a B-52 plane that went into an uncontrolled spin over North Carolina – both bombs fell and one began the detonation process.
The US government has acknowledged the accident before, but never made public how close the bomb came to detonating.
The plane was on a routine flight when it began to break up over North Carolina on 23 January 1961.
As it was breaking apart, a control inside the cockpit released the two Mark 39 hydrogen bombs over Goldsboro.
One fell to the ground unarmed. But the second "assumed it was being deliberately released over an enemy target – and went through all its arming mechanisms save one, and very nearly detonated over North Carolina," Mr Schlosser told the BBC’s Katty Kay.
Only the failure of a single low-voltage switch prevented disaster, he said.
One can but imagine what a nuclear explosion on US soil would have done to national politics in 1961.