08.08.

1991: The Collapse of the World’s Tallest Structure (the Warsaw Radio Mast)

1991: The Collapse of the World’s Tallest Structure (the Warsaw Radio Mast)
Photo Credit To Wikipedia Commons/ The collapsed radio mast

Story Highlights

  • Historical event:
  • 8 August 1991
  • The collapse occurred during replacement of the cables on the highest part of the radio mast. The structure first bent and then snapped at roughly half its height.

On this day in 1991 the then-highest human structure in the world, approximately 646 meters high radio mast near Warsaw, collapsed.

Only one structure higher than that of the Warsaw radio mast was built till today – the famous Burj Khalifa in Dubai. Interestingly, the radio mast near Warsaw, with its 646 meters, was the world’s tallest structure for 17 years (from its construction in 1974 until its collapse on this day in 1991).

Radio mast near Warsaw was used for broadcasting television and radio signals and was located in Konstantynów, approximately 80 kilometers west from Warsaw. The mast transmitter had an output of 2 megawatts (2,000 kilowatts). The signal from the mast could reportedly be received across the entire globe.

The collapse occurred during replacement of the cables on the highest part of the radio mast. The structure first bent and then snapped at roughly half its height. The way the mast tumbled made its repair virtually impossible. After the collapse, the title of the tallest structure ever built went to the radio mast near the city of Fargo in the American state of North Dakota (about 628 meters high).

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