14 January 2009

On 14 Jan 1969--Explosion on USS Enterprise

On 14 JANUARY 1969--On the USS Enterprise the exhaust from an aircraft engine starter unit was directed onto a pod containing four ZUNI rockets. Heat caused a warhead to detonate. Fragments ruptured the aircraft's fuel tank and ignited a fire. Three more ZUNI warheads detonated less than a minute after the first explosion. The shaped charges blew holes through the flight deck allowing burning fuel to invade the lower decks. In all, there were 18 munition's explosions and 8 holes were blown through the flight deck. Losses totaled 15 aircraft, 28 dead, and another 344 injured. Below is a film clip of some of the damage from this explosion. If you would like more information about this first nuclear powered aircraft carrier in the U.S. Navy you may visit her official online pages.