Airmen from the 91st Missile Wing Security Forces team were traveling on gravel roads May 1 in North Dakota when the back hatch of their vehicle opened and a container filled with the explosive ammunition fell out, according to a statement from Minot Air Force Base.
On May 11, the Air Force sent more than 100 airmen to walk the entire six-mile route where the grenades were probably lost, according to a statement from the local Mountrail County sheriff. But two weeks after it was lost, the box of explosives still hasn’t been found.
May 15th, 2018 9:35pm
May 15th, 2018 10:47pm
May 16th, 2018 12:10am
Yeah so some prepper has a real nice cache now. Not really a problem.
The problem is why did it take 10 days to realize the grenades were missing and fell out and then go look for them? Shouldn't they have taken inventory when arriving?
And why weren't they tied down so they wouldn't fall out.
Lots of reduced ranks to go around here.
May 16th, 2018 7:26am
"mishandling the crate of grenades could result in them performing their intended function at an unintended time"
May 16th, 2018 7:29am
In the past the US military has lost over a dozen nuclear weapons, some fully armed. When the USSR deployed ICBMs in the ‘50s, the US responded with Operation Chrome Dome, keeping a dozen SAC bombers airborne at all times. Fully armed B-52s were flying around all the time; accidents were unavoidable.
In 1958 a fully armed hydrogen bomb was jettisoned in the coastal waters of Georgia near Tybee Island and never found; it’s still there, somewhere. In 1961 a refueling accident caused a crash, and a lost bomb landed in a tree in North Carolina. Four of its five safety switches failed; only the last one prevented a nuclear detonation. A second bomb hit the ground at trans-sonic speed and buried itself some 20 feet in the soft soil. The Plutonium core was recovered but all of the Uranium trigger is still down there, somewhere.
May 16th, 2018 7:31am
It's possible that the grenades require priming before use, this would make them (a little) safer to handle and transport.
Grumpy Old Git
May 16th, 2018 9:34am
Not for a missile field defense force. They were being carried in anticipation of needing them. So they were armed & live.
My favorite missile story, heard from a friend who was in the same unit:
A team of missile maintenance guys would occasionally deploy a warhead to an ICBM down in the silo (it would get pulled for routine maintenance, then later replaced). At the time, they would use a trailer with a hatch in the floor - they'd drive over top of the silo, open the hatch, lower the warhead via a crane mounted inside, attach it to the rocket, close everything up and drive away - with the Russians not being able to observe whether it was a real warhead or a fake one (to throw them off).
Naturally, there would be heavy security for these operations. And while it was going on one day a deer leapt over the fence, triggering the alarm. So the security forces shot it with their M-16s .. because why not? When they were done working with the warhead, they hung the deer from the crane and cleaned & gutted it as they drove back to the base. Everyone had venison that night.
These days everyone is too uptight and such a thing couldn't happen. :(