Monday, October 19, 2015

Spain, US reach accord to clean up nuclear accident site

Washington and Madrid have reached a new agreement in principle for the United States to clean up land contaminated by radiation from un-detonated nuclear bombs that accidentally fell on a site in Spain in 1966, a joint statement said Monday.

The two sides "intend to negotiate a binding agreement for a cooperative effort to conduct further remediation of the Palomares site and arrange for disposal of the contaminated soil at an appropriate site in the United States," the statement said.

On Jan. 17, 1966, a U.S. B-52 bomber carrying four nuclear bombs collided with a tanker plane during mid-air refueling off the coast of Spain, and two thermonuclear bombs fell near Palomares.

Although they did not denotate, they broke up, spreading seven pounds of plutonium over a 200 hectare (490 acre) area.

Under an earlier accord that ended in 2010, Washington paid 314,000 euros ($350,000) a year for tests for contamination in the region as well as regular blood tests for more than 1,000 Palomares residents.



  1. US Agrees to Clean Up Nuclear Waste From Accident in Spain 50 Years Ago...

    The US Air Force B-52, carrying four hydrogen bombs, collided with a tanker during refueling in 1966 and crashed in the southern Spanish coastal village of Palomares. Three of the bombs – said to be more powerful than those dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki – were found in the countryside. The explosives in two of the weapons detonated upon impact, contaminating a nearly 1-square-mile area with plutonium. The fourth bomb fell into the Mediterranean.

    "[The agreement] is very advanced, but believe me, we will not say a word about the details," Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo was quoted as saying at a press conference by El Mundo.

    The date, cost or other details of the operation – still reported to be under negotiation – have not been disclosed.........Read more:

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