Boy, they got lucky: The incredible story of how the U.S. air force accidentally dropped a nuclear weapon on to a little girl’s playhouse in 1958¿ in South Carolina
Their awesome power had been harnessed by the Americans ten years earlier to help bring about an end to the Second World War.
But a US Air Force crew nearly wrought similar destruction on its own people after accidentally dropping a nuclear bomb on south Carolina at the height of the Cold War.
But thanks to remarkable good fortune no one was killed in the incident on March 11, 1958.
That afternoon sisters Helen and Frances Gregg, aged six and nine, and their nine-year-old cousin Ella Davies were in the playhouse their father had built for them in the woods behind their house in Mars Bluff, South Carolina.
At around four o’clock they decided to move from the playhouse to the side yard 200 yards away. It was a decision that kept them from becoming the first Americans killed by a nuclear weapon released on U.S. territory.
Minutes later the woods behind the playhouse were destroyed by a nuclear bomb.
The high-explosive trigger in the bomb blew up on contact with the ground, leaving a crater 50 feet across and 35 feet deep.