A secret nuclear warhead base was located near Trzemeszno Lubuskie
A secret Soviet nuclear warhead base, "Wołkodaw" near Trzemeszno Lubuskie
The Lubuskie Land, referred to as "the Berlin gate" by historians, holds a special place in the history of European fortifications, since it was here that all modern solutions throughout history were implemented.
This was influenced by its tactical, geomorphologic and political location. In the past 100 years, the Lubuskie Land was one huge construction site of military facilities originally intended to protect the capital of Germany, and after the change of the political system and the demarcation of new western borders after World War II, it was here that the nuclear weapon depots were located.
THE COLD WAR
During the Cold War, the Warsaw Pact was getting ready for a nuclear attack on Western Europe. In 1960 military training in conditions similar to those of a real war took place; their objective was to test the transportation of nuclear weapons from the USSR to shock troops stationed in western Poland. Air, sea and land transportation was tested. All of these activities ended in a fiasco. The rocket army was to be ready to start instant actions, but the time of transportation turned out to take too long, and moreover, during transportation the nuclear warheads were exposed to destruction by the enemy. A decision was made: the nuclear warheads had to be placed in Poland.
AN IMPORTANT DECISION
As a result of the unsuccessful training, on 25 February 1967 the Polish Minister of Defence, Marian Spychalski and the Soviet Minister of Defence, Marshal Andrei Grechko signed a secret agreement ("concerning measures taken with respect to the increase of the army's operational readiness"). The agreement concerned the placement of nuclear weapon storehouses in Poland, with weapons to be used instantly. Negotiations had begun much earlier - in 1966. The relevant programme received the most secret clause and the cryptonym "Wisła" [Vistula].
NUCLEAR WEAPONS IN POLAND
In order to ensure fast transportation of nuclear weapons to the rocket launchers in Poland, in the years 1967-1970 three storage complexes for nuclear weapons were built; the Soviets had full control over them. These facilities were located in Podborsk near Białogard – Facility 3001, in Brzeźnica - Kolonia near Jastrów – Facility 3002 and in the vicinity of Trzemeszno Lubuskie near Wędrzyn in the Lubuskie Land – Facility 3003, with the known cryptonym "Wołkodaw". Poland financed the purchase of construction materials. The Soviets were responsible for the construction and supply of equipment, and they held the property title to the facility. After the completion of the construction the storehouses were commissioned to the Northern Group of the Soviet Army with headquarters in Legnica. The commissioning of the base and the official although secret approval of the storage of nuclear weapons in Poland might have caused a serious risk both for the state and for the local inhabitants.
THE SECRET OF THE FOREST NEAR TRZEMESZNO LUBUSKIE
Nobody had the slightest idea what was built in the beautiful forests near the Wędrzyn military training ground, right next to the crystal waters of Buszno Lake. The truth was known only to a few higher officers in the General Staff of the People's Army of Poland.
Facility 3003 (Wołkodaw) located in a forest near Trzemeszno Lubuskie covered the area of 300 ha and resembled a well guarded stronghold. The entire area was surrounded with a high barbed wire fence. Inside, there were barracks, administrative and technical services’ buildings and guarded zones, additionally surrounded by a wall made of concrete prefabricated elements, in which there were nuclear warhead storage bunkers. Entrance to the most guarded zones was only possible through the main gate with a guardhouse. Several watch towers and shooting stations guarded the safety of the base. The area between the fences was guarded by dogs on chains fastened to 30-metre steel lines, stretched between poles and acoustic mines. In case of increased operational readiness mine barrages were to be laid. Additional security measures were also taken, such as small shooting stations in specially prepared bends of the concrete fence, an additional guardhouse beyond the protected area, trenches in front of the emergency gates and a small concrete bunker near the concrete wall, with access through a special covered trench. Furthermore, along the defence line at the fences there were prefabricated bunkers for the SPS-2M machinegun, and excavation, tubular and observation bunkers. For safety reasons, the warehouse zone was divided into three protected areas separated by a barbed wire fence. In each zone, there was a storage bunker with loading and unloading platforms. The "Granite" type of bunker was the nearest one to the main entrance; built in the mid-1970s, it was round, and had a loading platform. It was a storage place for 152 mm and 203 mm calibre artillery ammunition with nuclear charge weighing 73 kg. It was directly protected by trenches surrounding the bunker, with numbered loopholes for individual soldiers, as well as anti-assault poles with barbed wire placed on the bunker's earth blanket. The bunkers made of prefabricated elements were ventilated and had bomb-proof doors which could withstand the explosion of an air bomb. The further two zones separated by a barbed wire fence contained the two main T-7 storage bunkers for nuclear warheads which were to be carried by 8K11 and 3R10 rockets. The two-level structures had four storage chambers each, a transportation hall and a complex of technical facilities including command posts, a ventilation centre, rooms with air conditioning systems, an engine room, a filtering room, a control room, fuel and water tanks. There were no rooms for the staff in them, however, and during emergencies when the bunker remained closed for many hours, the staff had to sit on the floor. The warheads were stored on special carts with tyred wheels which were stabilized by means of lines so that in case of any bomb explosions in the neighbourhood and the resulting floating effect, they would not be moved inside the chamber. In each chamber with light sliding doors 15 charts with warheads could be stored. Geiger counters, temperature and air humidity indicators and a valve on an installation used to clean and blow compressed air through the carts with warheads were obligatory in each chamber. The temperature in the chambers had to be from +5˚ to +15˚C. In critical cases the temperature could increase in short periods of time, not exceeding three months, to maximum 25˚C. Air humidity should be from 40 to 70 %, but during servicing works it should not be less than 55%.These requirements concerning the storage of warheads forced the designers to install efficient and reliable ventilation systems, as well as heating and cooling systems in the facility. Bunkers had two transportation entrances with bomb-proof concrete doors 0.5 m thick, with bolts, and a separate entrance for the staff in the form of a reinforced concrete tower with a staircase and shooting positions. It is interesting that there were no elevators to transport the carts with warheads vertically in the transportation and servicing hall. They were replaced with a hoisting winch placed on a gantry crane beneath the ceiling. In the bunker's earth blanket there were discharge stacks, easily located by airplanes. An additional protection was a wooden tower with four shooting positions and two small reinforced concrete single SPS-2M bunkers. Two loading platforms were built in order to service the bunker quickly - each with three positions covered by camouflage netting and tin umbrella roofs. Direct protection was provided by special trenches with numbered shooting positions, small SPS-2M bunkers, individual field shooting stations and a bunker with a bomb-proof tower for a heavy machinegun. In each zone there were also small underground tubular bunkers used as emergency bunkers, and ground-based observation positions in bunkers as well as over-ground observation positions high up in the trees. Transportation between the zones was possible due to the existence of field roads with concrete slabs. In the entire zone, about 30 covered field stations for transportation means were prepared, as well as one garage shed and a small workshop with an approach road for current repairs.
It is now estimated that about 120 Spetsnaz soldiers, 12 BMP-1 combat vehicles and two cars (a motor battalion) were assigned to protect every storage zone.
Officially, the Russians do not admit having stored nuclear weapons in Poland.
The fragment comes from the book entitled "Sulęcin from Primeval Times to the Cold War Times" - a report by Robert M. Jurga
We kindly invite you to come and see the model of the secret Soviet nuclear warhead base, "Wołkodaw" near Trzemeszno Lubuskie, which is situated in the Polish-German Cooperation Centre in Sulęcin, at 1 Młynarska Street.