Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Discussions on every day life in the Weimar Republic, pre-anschluss Austria, Third Reich and the occupied territories. Hosted by Vikki.
User avatar
Helmut0815
Member
Posts: 797
Joined: 19 Sep 2010 13:13
Location: Lower Saxony, Germany

Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by Helmut0815 » 28 Apr 2012 12:10

Here are three articles found on SPIEGEL online dealing with the dangerous remains of WWII in Germany.

1.) Growing Peril for Beachgoers - Two Hurt by WWII Phosphorus on German Shoreline
Two women suffered serious burns on a German beach over the weekend when they misidentified pieces of World War II phosphorus that had washed ashore as amber. Similar accidents occur each year and experts say the threat posed by rusting war munitions dumped into the Baltic and North Sea is increasing.

--> http://www.spiegel.de/international/ger ... 16,00.html
2.) Decaying and Deadly - WWII Mines Pose Growing Risk in Germany
Two anti-tank mines from World War II have exploded spontaneously in the ground next to a road in the eastern German state of Brandenburg. Fortunately, nobody has been hurt so far. Experts are warning that the risk of such sudden blasts is growing because the trigger mechanisms are decaying with age.

--> http://www.spiegel.de/international/ger ... 27,00.html
3.) Hunting For WWII Duds - German Firm Uses Aerial Photos to Find Bombs
A small German firm offers a unique service to the country's construction industry: It uses historical British and American aerial photography from World War II air strikes to determine the location of unexploded bombs. Thousands of tons of bombs still lie in the soil and the duds are becoming more dangerous.

--> http://www.spiegel.de/international/bus ... 36,00.html
regards

Helmut

grassi
Member
Posts: 553
Joined: 23 Aug 2004 10:18
Location: Munich

Re: Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by grassi » 24 May 2012 20:33

Munich, May 24th 2012: A bomb was found today in a famous football stadium (Station an der Grünwalderstraße).
http://www.focus.de/panorama/welt/muenc ... 58089.html

Best regards

grassi

Carl Schwamberger
Host - Allied sections
Posts: 9076
Joined: 02 Sep 2006 20:31
Location: USA

Re: Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 25 May 2012 00:28

My earliest experience with this sort of thing was in 1975 when two young boys were killed on a California public beach by a old AT rocket warhead (bazooka) they found. The beach, part of the Federal military reservation & Marine Corps Base Camp Pendelton had been used into the 1950s as a training site & the rocket was missed during clean up. The boy holding the warhead was ripped apart by the detonation and scattered in pieces, his companion was intact & killed by the concussion and metal fragments.

When I served on Okinawa in the middle 1980s there was a joint Japanese/US ordnance disposal group who were busy full time taking care of the weapons and explosives routinely uncovered by building construction. I dont recall any injured or killed those two years, but newly discovered ordnance was a monthly news item.

MAJ T
Member
Posts: 92
Joined: 27 Oct 2008 15:47
Location: Texas

Re: Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by MAJ T » 27 May 2012 21:13

When I was stationed at Geilenkirchen, GE in the early 90's there was still a prohibition on searching the woods for artifacts as live ordinance was still being found. And while it is not WWII related, I can also remember walking over were the fence between East & West and making sure to walk over an area where we could tell a dozer had cleared a path. They were still finding mines. Didn't want to be lucky enough to be one to find one that was missed.

Tom

Trackhead M2
Member
Posts: 1004
Joined: 24 Mar 2012 16:48
Location: North Utica, IL

Re: Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by Trackhead M2 » 29 May 2012 18:01

[quote="Helmut0815"]Here are three articles found on SPIEGEL online dealing with the dangerous remains of WWII in Germany.

1.) Growing Peril for Beachgoers - Two Hurt by WWII Phosphorus on German Shoreline

[quote]Two women suffered serious burns on a German beach over the weekend when they misidentified pieces of World War II phosphorus that had washed ashore as amber. Similar accidents occur each year and experts say the threat posed by rusting war munitions dumped into the Baltic and North Sea is increasing.

Dear H,
My Father remembers growing up in Sicily in the late 1940's/1950's being warned at school to watch out for unexploded ordinance left over from WW 2, I would be watching a WW 2 movie and he would tell me what the ordinance was supposed to do when it went off. Also have you read Yellow Rain by Sterling Seagrave? It includes an incident about a Belgian farmer who cut a tree down, sat on the stump and got horrible burns on his backside. There was WW 1 mustard gas seeping into the tree from the groundwater.

2.) Decaying and Deadly - WWII Mines Pose Growing Risk in Germany

[quote]Two anti-tank mines from World War II have exploded spontaneously in the ground next to a road in the eastern German state of Brandenburg. Fortunately, nobody has been hurt so far. Experts are warning that the risk of such sudden blasts is growing because the trigger mechanisms are decaying with age.

This problem isn't limited to Europe, the Libyans have thousands of mines left to clear.

Strike Swiftly,
TH-M2

User avatar
Helmut0815
Member
Posts: 797
Joined: 19 Sep 2010 13:13
Location: Lower Saxony, Germany

Re: Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by Helmut0815 » 03 Jan 2014 18:07

Today an excavator operator got killed in Euskirchen/North Rhine-Westphalia when his excavator hit a WW II dud hidden under a pile of rubbles. Eight other people were injured, the blast destroyed windows in wide vicinity.

http://www.spiegel.de/panorama/euskirch ... 41702.html

regards


Helmut

grassi
Member
Posts: 553
Joined: 23 Aug 2004 10:18
Location: Munich

Re: Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by grassi » 12 Jun 2014 17:24

American WWII bomb removed close to Leipzig Central Station (June 12th, 2014):

"Hier explodiert eine Weltkriegsbombe!"
http://www.bild.de/regional/leipzig/bli ... .bild.html

"Detonation auf Bahngelände: Kampfmittelräumdienst sprengt Fliegerbombe in Leipzig"
http://www.spiegel.de/panorama/bombe-au ... 74741.html

Video on MDR
http://www.mdr.de/sachsen/video202874_z ... fcd56.html

Best regards


grassi

User avatar
wenty
Member
Posts: 1601
Joined: 01 Dec 2002 23:41
Location: Australia

Re: Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by wenty » 15 Jun 2014 02:58

It really is terrible but you hear of things like World War II bombs exploding quite regularly actually. It's a wonder the known areas weren't cleared post-World War II to prevent such occurences?

Cheers,
Adam.

User avatar
Helmut0815
Member
Posts: 797
Joined: 19 Sep 2010 13:13
Location: Lower Saxony, Germany

Re: Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by Helmut0815 » 20 Aug 2014 17:21

Today a british 1,000 lb bomb which could not be defused because of its chemical delay detonator was blasted on the Autobahn A3 near Frankfurt.

Video: http://www.zdf.de/ZDFmediathek/beitrag/ ... -gesprengt

regards

Helmut

User avatar
Geoff Walden
Member
Posts: 2577
Joined: 29 Mar 2002 14:50
Location: South of the Mason-Dixon Line

Re: Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by Geoff Walden » 21 Aug 2014 12:25

Yesterday a bomb was also found in Salzburg, Austria. The bomb was found not to have a detonator, so it didn't have to be defuzed, just removed.

http://www.berchtesgadener-anzeiger.de/ ... 56314.html

USS ALASKA
Member
Posts: 49
Joined: 10 Apr 2008 01:34

Re: Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by USS ALASKA » 21 Aug 2014 13:58

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/067943 ... UTF8&psc=1

According to this text, there are still areas of France that are off limits due to WWI UXOs. A very good book that can be had cheap for those interested.

USS ALASKA

User avatar
wenty
Member
Posts: 1601
Joined: 01 Dec 2002 23:41
Location: Australia

Re: Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by wenty » 24 Aug 2014 06:35

I seem to remember hearing that there was some concern about sunken WWII wrecks which might start leaking oil - if they have not started doing so already - into the oceans of the world. We all know how much damage that can do.

Cheers,
Adam.

User avatar
Heimatschuss
Member
Posts: 2597
Joined: 22 May 2006 22:50
Location: Deutschland

Re: Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by Heimatschuss » 24 Aug 2014 08:47

Hello Adam,

compared to modern supertankers WW II vessels held rather moderate quantities of fuel oil. If I recall correctly the main concern for oil is in some Pacific coral islands where sunken ships are lying in the atoll lagoons (like in Truk). Coral reefs are very vulnerable even for smaller amounts of oil.

Best regards
Torsten

User avatar
wenty
Member
Posts: 1601
Joined: 01 Dec 2002 23:41
Location: Australia

Re: Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by wenty » 26 Aug 2014 05:05

Hi Heimat,

Thanks for that. Yes, I can imagine that particularly sensitive places such as coral reefs would be quite vulnerable. No matter how tough this material in World War II was, it's bound to corrode eventually, and if it contains dangerous materials then stories like the ones already in this thread will continue. One more unfortunate thing about war zones!

Cheers,
Adam.

User avatar
Geoff Walden
Member
Posts: 2577
Joined: 29 Mar 2002 14:50
Location: South of the Mason-Dixon Line

Re: Dangerous WWII remains in Germany

Post by Geoff Walden » 05 Sep 2014 16:59

Two 500 pound high explosive bombs were found today in Nürnberg, along with an incendiary bomb. The incendiary has already been removed, but the explosive bombs won't be deactivated until Sunday.

http://www.nordbayern.de/region/nuernbe ... -1.3869923

Over 600 pounds of buried munitions were found near Coburg. The buried cache included hand grenades, Panzerfaust rounds, mortar rounds, and small arms ammunition.

http://www.tvo.de/mediathek/video/unter ... -geborgen/

Return to “Life in the Third Reich & Weimar Republic”