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Noise of retired milk cans nets Dutch village world record

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

EE, the Netherlands - Inhabitants of this small village in the province of Friesland recently put Ee quite loudly on the world map, so to speak. On New Year’s Day 2000, Ee’s people shot off 3,500 times from milk can ‘cannons’, besting a 2,000 record set two days earlier by Lutten (in Overijssel) and thereby getting an entry in the Guinness Book of Records itself.

Ee used 1,054 milk cans (as opposed to Lutten’s 800) as cannons, and well over 150 kilograms of carbide as the blasting agent for the ‘cannonballs’, in this case plastic soccer balls.

The event was well prepared, monitored and secured, as what is called ‘melkbusschieten’ can be a dangerous activity. Many rural teenagers at one time or another have found out the hard way, when they packed too much of the carbide explosives in a milk can, put the lid on, heated the bottom of the cans and sent the tightly fit, heavy lids skywards, or - in worse cases - have the can explode. Not so in Ee and Lutten, where the blasting was well-managed and supervised.