British Town Uses Oregon’s ‘Exploding Whale’ Fiasco to Teach Physical Distancing
Unfortunately, it is pretty often that people don’t listen to sound advice from experts and get things blow up – in this case, literally, in their faces. Fittingly, the story of a disastrous attempt to blow up a dead whale on a beach in Florence, Oregon, in the United States, was used by a British council to convince people to stay at home.
In November 1970, officials in Oregon, USA decided to blow up a rotting whale carcass. The whole thing went horribly wrong.— Doncaster Council (@MyDoncaster) April 6, 2020
Why do we bring this up? Well, this story can teach us 3 things about #coronavirus ⬇️ pic.twitter.com/9MOeRESkzx
Doncaster Council shared the tale of a poor sperm whale that died and washed ashore in November 1970s, and how city officials attempted to blow up the 45-foot 8-ton mammal in order to get rid of it. What an idea!
They recounted the story in a series of threads, explaining how dynamite was used to explode the rotting whale carcass in front of a crowd of spectators. We are not blaming them, smartphones weren’t invented yet, and the only fun they could have had was watching a whale get blown-up. What could go wrong?
Well, as you can guess, a lot could go wrong. Their plan in its entirety was this: They would blow it up dynamite and hope that seagulls ate all the small chunks. George Thornton, who was the engineer in charge of the explosion, wasn’t sure how much dynamite would be enough, so he would settle on half a tonne.
George Thornton, who sensibly seems to be wearing a hard hat, was the engineer in charge of the explosion.— Doncaster Council (@MyDoncaster) April 6, 2020
By his own admission, he wasn’t sure how much dynamite would be needed to completely obliterate one of the world’s largest mammals, so he opted for half a tonne. pic.twitter.com/st2VLfsiha
An ex-member of the military would warn that just a few sticks of dynamite would be enough; however, Thornton and his team were ambitious people with a mission in mind.
On a dreary November morning, they exploded the whale, and akin to a movie, massive chunks of blubber flew through the air and rained down on the spectators.
The overwhelming smell sent people running for their homes as rotting whale plopped down around them.— Doncaster Council (@MyDoncaster) April 6, 2020
The situation was dangerous - a car was even crushed by a huge lump of blubber a quarter of a mile away. pic.twitter.com/Mw0svXy90Y
It’s raining whale carcass, hallelujah?
In order to recap the story, they gave three important COVID-19 lessons.
1️⃣ DON’T IGNORE THE ADVICE THAT EXPERTS GIVE YOU.— Doncaster Council (@MyDoncaster) April 6, 2020
They know what they’re talking about.
Or else you might get whale guts, lumps, gunk and blood all over you. This is not a threat, just facts.
2️⃣ Sometimes, it’s better to just sit at home and do nothing than go outside and do something ridiculous.— Doncaster Council (@MyDoncaster) April 6, 2020
Let nature take its course.
Truer words were never said.
3️⃣ When you ignore expert advice and act like an idiot, you cover everyone else with decaying whale blubber. #StayHome and stop being selfish.— Doncaster Council (@MyDoncaster) April 6, 2020
Moreover, they also shared the story of the Russian military hero Stanislav Petroc, who averted a nuclear war in 1983 when his patience revealed an American attack on the Soviet Union was a false alarm.
Hello. This man’s name was Stanislav Petrov.— Doncaster Council (@MyDoncaster) March 23, 2020
Stanislav was a hero, and if you want to – you can be just like him. Let us explain. pic.twitter.com/Xs6C82N6zZ
These stories shared by Doncaster Council are truly inspiring since they remind us that in order to be heroes, we just have to stay at our homes. Being a superhero for the people in-need has been never easier.