Publication: Monitor Volume: 2 Issue: 200

On September 14, 1954, the Soviet Union conducted its 8th nuclear explosion, an atmospheric burst over the southern foothills of the Urals at the Totsk test site midway between what are now again called Orenburg and Samara. The Soviets made no announcement at the time, either to their own people or abroad, and it was the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission that in late October of that year made public the blast and the series that followed it.

Two days ago, a conference on the impact of that explosion on the region ended in Orenburg. The conferees found that the affect on the health of the population was "lingering and severe." The mortality rate was found to be nearly twice as high as in other areas, and an abnormal number of children were said to suffer from genetic physical impairments. Conferees said that radioactive isotopes in the soil were up to five times the normal levels. The region was compared with Bryansk — downwind from Chernobyl — in the incidence and nature of genetic disorders in children and adults. (Itar-Tass, October 23)

No Deal Yet on Black Sea Fleet.