The Government of Oregon Blows Up A Dead Whale

Oh boy. So in 1970, a dead whale washed up on the beaches of Florence, Oregon. It was big and disgusting; eight tons of rotting flesh that no one was quite sure how to get rid of. Eventually, the Oregon Highway Division – the government department in charge of the beach – decided to blow it up with dynamite. That way, they figured, it would be in small enough chunks for gulls and other scavengers to clean up quickly. This was not the best idea the Oregon Highway Division ever had. And Portland's KATU-TV news team was there to cover it.

Unbelievably, every once in a while, a dead whale will actually explode all by itself. It happens because of a build-up of gas as it decomposes. According to the "Exploding Whale" page of Wikipedia, it happened in B.C. once; blubber "hung in the trees for weeks." And in 2004, the biggest whale carcass ever found in Taiwan exploded as it was being carried through a city on the back of a truck, splattering onlookers with blood and intestines and goo. You can read the BBC report on that here.


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