Boy finds WWII bomb with metal detector

Discussion in 'WW2 General' started by Thorlifter, Dec 31, 2012.

  1. Thorlifter

    Thorlifter Well-Known Member

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    This story could have ended VERY bad. I was also amazed at the mothers attitude of "this made our Christmas" and "we can't wait for him to go out again." Stupid woman. Maybe her son will find and dig up another bomb!

    Not bad for a first go! Schoolboy finds WW2 bomb - with metal detector he got for Christmas. - Yahoo! News UK

    A stunned schoolboy sparked a major security scare after finding a buried Second World War bomb near his house - with a metal detector he got for Christmas.

    Sonny Cater, seven, received the £30 device as a gift and gave it its first outing in fields near his home when he stumbled on the mud-caked metal capsule.

    After showing the find to his family, a bomb disposal squad was eventually sent to their home in Kings Lynn, Norfolk, to deal with the bomb.

    Experts identified the device as a 10lbs British practice bomb from WWII and it was removed for safe disposal.

    Sonny's father Jem, 37, had become suspicious of the device and washed it under a tap before contacting a relative who is a former RAF armourer.

    His mother Tracey explained that the bizarre incident 'made their Christmas'.

    She said: She said: "We are dumbfounded that he discovered this on his first go.

    "We are going to go out again to see if he can find something Roman. It has made our Christmas.
    "It was caked in mud and Jem just thought it was a lump of metal and took it home.

    "Sonny did become a little nervous with the arrival of the emergency services."

    Sonny was enjoying a walk across Roydon Common for around 15 minutes with his parents and brother Marley, nine, on Boxing Day when his metal detector started beeping.
    Discovered: The WW2 practice bomb found by Sonny (SWNS)

    He dug up the treasure but couldn't make out what it was - so he hurriedly bundled up the muddy object and took it home to wash down.

    Concerned Jem contacted his partner's father, Steve Wood, after uncovering the pointed end.

    Granddad Steve, who had served more than 20 years in the RAF armoury, advised him to call 999 and place it in a bucket of cold water.

    This was a precaution in case it was a German phosphorous bomb, which would ignite if dry.

    Bomb disposal experts from RAF Wittering in Cambridgeshire rushed to the family home and identified the item as a 10lb British practice bomb head.

    The bomb head still contained internal wiring and was taken away for disposal.

    It is believed to have been used in practice World War II bomb runs.

    Luckily the 10lb bomb head did not contain any explosive material.

    Mum Tracy, 39, a nurse at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Kings Lynn, Norfolk, added: "Kids always love looking for treasure so we thought it would be a fun random present for his stocking.

    "When the it started buzzing we all thought it would be some two pence pieces or something like that - I never thought it would be anything this serious.

    "It was all very exciting, the kids and Jem started digging and then our crazy dog started digging too.

    "It was a big muddy lump when it came to the surface so we stupidly thought lets take it home.

    "We feel a bit silly now we know it could have potentially been dangerous but its not often we go exploring and end up with a bomb in a bucket of water at the end of the garden.

    "I should imagine there was a few curtains twitching on our road on Boxing day.

    "There was the police and bomb disposal outside our house the neighbours must have thought we were mad."

    The torpedo-shaped bomb which was discovered was of no danger to the public but was deposed of.

    Practice bombs were used in the first and second world war to allow military to practice without causing the same excess of damage as they would with a regular bomb.

    Training pilots would also use the 10lb practice bombs as they were cheaper than the £1000 worth of bomb used in military attack.

    RAF Wittering spokesman Flight Lieutenant Donald Earl has advised people to call police and not move suspicious items.

    He said: "We find a lot of bombs in Afghanistan with metal detectors but we don't tend to find them in the UK.

    "We would urge members of the public to leave suspicious items in situ."
     
  2. yulzari

    yulzari Active Member

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    When I was a lad in England in the 1960's we were taught at school to recognise the smaller german bombs, especially the butterfly ones and not to touch them. Then, on a geography field trip one of us went up to the teacher and said 'look what I've found Sir' showing him a butterfly bomb. Mercifully it was rusted closed and the bomb disposal folk took it away.
     
  3. Aaron Brooks Wolters

    Aaron Brooks Wolters Well-Known Member

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    I'll bet that was some excitement. Some find. Glad it was not dangerous.:cool:
     
  4. tyrodtom

    tyrodtom Well-Known Member

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    I don't know about British practice bombs, but American practice bombs had spotting charges in them so you could see from a distance how close the bomb fell from the target. It didn't blow the bomb apart, they were reusable. But if you had the open end facing you and the spotting charge went off, it would severly injure or maybe even kill you. It was just black powder, and probably inert after decades underground, but with explosives you never know.
     
  5. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Thank God the boy found a dummy and not the real deal...
     
  6. bob44

    bob44 Member

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    Good thing it was a dummy. But I read about live bombs and shells still being found.

    Black power becomes very unstable after time. Just moving it can ignite it. Be carefull.
     
  7. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    Thank god nothing happened.

    Very common thing though in Europe. When I lived on in Germany it was regular thing to find UXO's from WW2. Our school was even evacuated on several occasions. An estimated 15 WW2 bombs dropped from the air, are found per day. An estimated 285,000 tons of unexploded bombs are still undiscovered in Germany. I am sure that England, France and other countries are just the same. It is amazing how this war still effects people even today.
     
  8. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    Didn't a farmer just recently find a live WWI Mustard Gas shell near Verdun?
     
  9. Marcel

    Marcel Well-Known Member

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    At Verdun, stuff from WW1 are found every day. If you walk the woods you'll be able to find all kinds of stuff, bones, handgrenades, guns, you name it. It's just everywhere.
     
  10. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    When we visited Verdun last year, we purposely stayed on the marked paths because of this. It was amazing how many people were walking around outside of them though, even with signs warning you not to do so.
     
  11. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    That whole region was a meat-grinder, but to think that there are still UXO mustard gas shells/cannisters (or even phosgene) around is a spooky thought :/
     
  12. buffnut453

    buffnut453 Well-Known Member

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    People are...well, stupid. When I was in uniform, we used to take some of our intel students on a battlefield tour of Dieppe. Bear in mind, these were all military personnel who'd been on rifle ranges and told not to pick anything up on the range. We also briefed them before we left that this was a battlefield and that they could, potentially, come across unexploded ordnance. On one trip, a couple of the students weren't listening to the presentation and wandered off a little ways from the main group. I turned around to see them kicking at something in the ground. It was something metal in the ground. I rapidly hoicked them away and gave them a reaming for being stoooopid. Turns out it was just s small-diameter metal bar that was buried but you couldn't see that when they started kicking at it. It was worse than herding kids or cats...and that's saying something. Unfortunately, people don't realise how dangerous unexploded ordnance can be. Just because it hasn't gone BOOOM! for 70 years or more doesn't mean it's safe.
     
  13. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
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    We experienced the same thing at a tour of the Battle of Bulge sites.
     
  14. janise koestner

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    Really huge metal detecting..How could he find that. I could only find several coins. I found that metal detecting is far more difficult than I think.
     
  15. pattle

    pattle Member

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    There was a bloke near us that found an anti aircraft shell in his back garden so he picked it up and put it in his car boot (trunk if your American) and was about to drive over to the police station when his wife eventually made him see that this was not a bright idea. When the bomb disposal turned up they did a controlled explosion with shell still in his car.
     
  16. pattle

    pattle Member

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    This a picture from the local newspaper appealing for the identities of two men spotted leaving the Lulworth gunnery ranges carrying two rather large tank shells on their shoulders. shellidiots.jpg
     
  17. razor1uk

    razor1uk Well-Known Member

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    #17 razor1uk, Aug 9, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2013
    Carry tank/arty rounds like a scuba tank - that's very hopeful. Somepeople just loose their sence of forethought with that 'Ooh/Wow' factor.

    I once found a rusted mills grenade when I was 7 or 8 with my friend in a dirty, damp, junk and rat filled abandoned air raid bunker behind an old factory in my home town in the 1980's - apparently it was live, but the whole thing was rusted so much all over it that it was likely it was inoperable - I knew to leave it alone once I took it out in to the daylight and saw what it was - I grew up watching most B&W war films shown in the 80's UK, and took my friend to tell our mums about it - I don't know if they officials took it away for blowing, or examination, I don't even know if it made the local paper - but not long after the two access 'holes' were concreted up/over.

    There was also part of a Peugot engine in there in parts with smashed cases which we were both more interested in and searching for parts of it; that's how I found the grenade.. - we both my friend and I had motorbikes at onetime or another...
     
  18. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    So these clowns see a couple of shells laying there (I assume on the beach, since the paths are cleared of UXOs) and decide to take them home??

    What can they be possibly thinking? Wait, I just answered my own question.

    They weren't...
     
  19. pattle

    pattle Member

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    If you visit the Lulworth ranges (near Bovington tank museum) you can normally see these sort of shells laying about on the fields from the roads and paths etc. I believe these rounds to be harmless solid shot, but they should always be left well alone and never ever be approached or touched as you never know. These ranges have been used since the First World War and are open to the public most of the summer and regularly during the winter, visitors are of course warned constantly not to leave the paths due to an accumulation of nearly a centuries worth of potentially unexploded munitions, but of course some do. Even harmless looking pieces of shrapnel can turn out to be dangerous especially when taken from the sea, there have been cases of this stuff catching fire once dried out often when in peoples trouser pockets or cars.
     
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