The first government search in decades for a hydrogen bomb lost off the Georgia coast in 1958 found no trace of the sunken weapon, the Air Force said Friday.
The report — issued nine months after scientists tested radiation levels off Tybee Island — concluded that there is no danger of a nuclear blast from the 7,600-pound bomb and that the weapon should be left where it is, buried somewhere in the muck.
"We still think it's irretrievably lost. We don't know where to look for it," said Billy Mullins, an Air Force nuclear weapons adviser who led the search.
A damaged B-47 bomber jettisoned the Mark-15 bomb into Wassaw Sound about 15 miles from Savannah after colliding with a fighter jet during a training flight.
The military soon gave up the search for the bomb, but decided to look again last year, after a retired Air Force pilot claimed his private search team had detected unusually high radiation levels in the sound.
"I'll have to agree with them," said Derek Duke, who has spent more than five years searching for the bomb. "Whatever we thought we saw maybe wasn't anything at all."