Canadian diver comes across ‘Fat Man’

archive – Diving NewsCanadian diver comes across ‘Fat Man'

A Canadian diver appears to have found a long-lost atomic bomb. Sean Smyrichinsky spotted the device at about 15m depth, while using a DPV to search for sea-cucumbers at a rarely dived site off Boyle Point, Pitt Island in British Columbia.

“I found this big thing under water, huge, never seen anything like it before,” he told the Vancouver Sun.

At the surface he told friends: “Hey, I found a UFO. It’s really bizarre.”

He had no camera but later showed a sketch of the device to local fishermen, one of whom remembered a story of a missing bomb.

This 4900kg Mark 4 nuclear device was lost after a US Air Force B36 bomber crashed while flying a mission from Alaska to California in February 1950. It was packed with lead and TNT but was said to contain no radioactive materials. 

The 17-man crew baled out after ice built up on the aircraft's wings and three of its six engines caught fire, but they first set the B36 on autopilot to come down at sea instead of land.

Five of the men died, though their bodies were never found. The B36 crashed almost 200 miles from where they had jumped out.

It was later revealed that they were on a mission to simulate a nuclear attack on San Francisco “as real as it gets short of war”, using a device based on the Mark 3 “Fat Man” atomic bomb used at Nagasaki.

Following Internet research, Smyrichinsky thinks the device he saw matches the description of a Mark 4 bomb. Canada’s Department of National Defence has told him that it is “looking into this matter with keen interest”.

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