Today is Exploding Whale Day!

By | November 12, 2009

It’s November 12th again… and out of the time I’ve lived in lane county I’m still disappointed that no one told me about Exploding whale day…
And I couldnt help but to crack up…

This happened 39 years ago in Florence Oregon… Florence is a small fishing town on the Oregon coast which boasted a population of 2000 at the time.. I think they are up to around 7000 now…

Here’s the scoop. As well as a link to the news video that captured it all…

Florence Oregon – Nov. 12th, 1970
A dead whale lands on the beach, and has to be removed by the Oregon Highway Division. The OHD uses Dynamite, hoping to blast the whale into tiny pieces for the seagulls to eat, and to blow the rest into the sea. Using 1 ton of TNT, they blast the whale straight
up and out, and parts of the whale are landing on cars about 1 mile away. Much of the whale remains at the blast site, and has to be bulldozed into the sand.

one local resident recalls the story:
I was there that day, on the dunes, over looking the beach. We were between the whale and parking lot. Parts flew everywhere, with some flying over our heads and as was said, one landed on a car. The owner said “Oh my God, what am I going to tell my insurance man?” He sure had a sick look on his face. It took days to get the smell out of our hair and clothes. Everything was very oily. Days before, someone had taken a chain saw and removed the lower jaw of the whale. The day they blew the whale is one day I’ll always remember. I’ll not do that again.

Needless to say, Oregon has not blown up a whale since.

Google Video of the original 1970 newscast that captured the explosion:

Here is a newer recap of that day (from 2003) talking to some of the people involved.. this one is significantly more informative but the link above is a must watch and watch it first..

Wikipedia has some more information about the story… I’m still laughing.. yes, I live in that county…

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