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Bomb squads called after blasting caps found in College Township shed

Blasting caps were discovered in a shed along E. College Ave. June 19, 2015 at a home being renovated. Bomb squad from Penn State University and the Pa. State Police were called to the scene to investigate.
Blasting caps were discovered in a shed along E. College Ave. June 19, 2015 at a home being renovated. Bomb squad from Penn State University and the Pa. State Police were called to the scene to investigate. CDT photo

Bomb squads were called to a College Township house Friday after homeowners found several blasting caps in a shed on the property, a fire official said.

Centre Region Council of Governments fire director Steve Bair confirmed the discovery of about a dozen devices, used to detonate explosives, shortly after 1:30 p.m. Police and fire units, including bomb teams from Penn State and the state police, arrived on the scene, just east of the Nittany Mall in the 3300 block of East College Avenue, beginning at about 10:30 a.m.

The property has been vacant for about a year, said Bill Kline, who lives next door.

Bair said workers for the current homeowners were tearing down the shed when they found the blasting caps and called police.

“These are not particularly dangerous if they’re handled properly, which is why we’re not evacuating anyone,” Bair said. “There is an explosive in the blasting cap. It’s not a large amount, but enough to take your hand off.”

Traffic was slow but unimpeded along College Avenue during the hours-long investigation.

Kline and his wife, Mary Ann, who said they moved to their home in 1959, said the previous neighbors had lived on the property since the 1990s but had died in recent years. They surmised that the blasting caps may have been in the shed since before that time, when the neighborhood was largely farmland, and may have been intended for stump removal.

Bair said the blasting caps, which he said appeared to be fairly old, would be detonated or burned in a remote location.

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