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Palomares

Palomares Palomares Palomares Palomares

The 17 of January of 1966 was a day that changed Palomares, fortunately the damages were minimum for what could have occurred, on this day, two airplanes loaded with atomic bombs had an accident on the skies of Palomares. 
In the accident were involved a US strategic bomber B-52 and a KC-135 in-flight refuelling (loaded with 110,000 litres of fuel) that collided at 10,000 meters on the Mediterranean coast, in Palomares airspace. The B-52 was returning from the Turkish-Soviet border to Seymour Johnson Air Base in Goldsboro, North Carolina, and KC-135 came from Moron Air Force Base. The manoeuvre was routine: the B-52 were refuelled on the way.

The B-52 carried four Mark 28 (model B28RI) thermonuclear bombs of 1.5 megatons each, 1.5 meters long by 0.5 meters wide, weighing 800 kg. Two of them remained intact, one on land (near the mouth of the river Almanzora) and the other on the sea. The others fell without parachutes, one on a village lot, the other in the Sierra Almagrera. There was no detonation to the violent clash with the ground, but the impact caused both bombs to break into pieces. The three that fell ashore were in a matter of hours recovered; The one that fell in the sea would be recovered 80 days later, the bombs had a power superior to 75 times the ones of Hiroshima.

But finally, the media impact of the event was such, that years later a film was recorded inspired by the event; Men of Honour, "by George Tillman, actor Gooding Jr. plays one of the divers who participated in the rescue of the missing bomb at sea. This event is known locally as “El Baño de Fraga en Palomares“

Only 1 km from the coast, Palomares village retains a Spanish feel largely unaffected by the coastal development of the area. Palomares is ideally placed for golfers; Desert Springs (5 mins), Valle del Este (20 mins) and Marina de la Torre (20 mins).The village has various shops, banks, doctor, chemist and a number of Spanish bars offering tapas and light snacks. The main fiesta is in early August. Within walking distance of Palomares is a long stretch of sandy beach and tree covered picnic area, with two Spanish beach bars offering typical Spanish fare during the high season. Slightly further a way are numerous rocky coves waiting to be discovered and often empty even in high season.

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