Saturn IB rocket unsafe to keep standing at Alabama rest stop

A roadside rocket display that for more than 40 years has stood as a welcome sign for drivers entering the state of Alabama is no longer safe to be left standing and should now be replaced, according to NASA and the museum charged with its care.

Officials at the agency’s Marshall space Flight Center and the U.S. space and Rocket Center in Huntsville have decided that the Saturn IB rocket erected in 1979 (opens in new tab) at the Ardmore Welcome Center in Elkmont needs to be replaced. More than just a matter of moving it elsewhere, the Apollo-era artifact may be destroyed due to its failing condition after nearly four-and-a-half decades on outdoor, vertical display.

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