Last updated: 04:00 PM ET, Fri April 03 2015

Atomic Bomb Test Site Opening to Public as Protests Loom

Destination & Tourism | Donald Wood | April 03, 2015

Atomic Bomb Test Site Opening to Public as Protests Loom

The Trinity Test site is the most famous nuclear testing grounds in the world and the spot where the first detonation of an atomic bomb took place, and visitors will be able to come to the historical landmark on Saturday, April 4, when it is opened to the public for a short time.

While there is a buzz in the air about seeing the site almost 70 years after the test was initially conducted, several descendants of families near the New Mexican testing grounds plan to protest the opening by the federal government.

According to The Associated Press, residents and family members of those who lived in the area in the years following the testing are looking for “acknowledgement and compensation” from the United States government. Reports of long-term health problems caused by the testing have been rampant in the area for years.

The Trinity Test took place on July 16, 1945, during the “Manhattan Project” when scientists successfully detonated the first atomic bomb near Alamogordo, New Mexico. Similar bombs would be dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan in August of the same year.

One of the people working hard for recognition for those in New Mexico affected by the test site is Tularosa Basin Downwinders co-founder, Tina Cordova. She is fighting to get the government to compensate people and their families impacted by the test and bring awareness to the Americans who suffered after being exposed to the fallout from the atomic bomb.

Cordova’s father lived in the area at the time of the Trinity Test and died after three battles against cancer.

According to The AP, the Federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention conducted a study of the area and found “exposure rates near the Trinity Site were thousands of times higher than currently allowed.”

It is clear that Cordova understands the visitors to the site can’t do anything to change the government’s perception, but she told The AP she is willing to change one mind at a time if necessary.

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