By Andrew Atkinson
Specialists Navy officers from Cartagena detonated a Civil War bomb – containing 70 kilos of highly volatile trilite – TNT.
The bomb was discovered by an off- duty agent of the Special Group of Underwater Activities – GEAS – of the Civil Guard, in situ 45 metres deep, in the waters of Sant Sebastià, in Barcelona.
The Cartagena specialist bomb team left their Murcia Navy base and travelled to Barcelona to detonate the bomb, which was submerged 25 metres from shore.
Following the bomb find bathers were evacuated by the authorities and the Civil Guardia attended the scene.
The Cartagena Navy disposal team used balloons to remove the bomb – dropped during the Civil War – with ‘lifting balloons’ lowered in the sea.
Once the bomb was hoisted out of the sea the Navy experts undertook a controlled explosion in a safe area.
Concerns about the seriousness of the bomb were highlighted, as an explosion in situ, could have damaged the under sea network of pipelines in Barcelona.
First Corporal of the Civil Guard’s diving unit, Antonio Pérez Prieto, was in charge of the operation, as the beach remained closed until the removal of the explosive and the detonation of the bomb was made.
The bomb was dropped during the 1936 Civil War. In the aftermath of the Civil War dozens of bombs have been discovered along the coast of Barcelona, namely in the Garraf area, littering the bottom of the sea.
The beach of Sant Sebastià, was immediately closed and the Barcelona Urban Guard extended the perimeter of protection to the esplanade of the Plaza de Mar, following the incident.