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Man tells how he almost mowed over pipe bomb

UPDATE: MOVING a white, cylindrical object out of the way as he mowed the lawn, it took just moments for Goodwood Rd resident Lyndon Whalan to realise what he picked up and threw over the fence of Thabeban State School was a homemade pipe bomb.

About 5pm on Tuesday Mr Whalan, who lives next door to the school, was outside mowing the lawn when he noticed the 20cm object made from PVC piping.

"At first I was just getting it off the footpath, there's no one at the school at the moment so I thought that's probably a good spot to put it," he said.

"Then I had a really good look and thought I really shouldn't have touched it."

Mr Whalan contacted police who arrived and confirmed his suspicions about what the object was.

"The response from the police and the guys who came from Rockhampton - they're the ones who deserve the pats on the back," he said.

Mr Lyndon said he didsn't believe the pipe bomb was intentionally placed where he found it, but said it was scary to think anyone was making and carry around such devices.

"You have to wonder what they were doing with it," he said.

"It's a bit scary really."

UPDATE: Bundaberg Police Inspector Kev Guteridge says the police are anxious to find the person responsible for placing a bomb in a residential area of Thabeban.

"This particular device was very very hazardous," he said.

He said it posed a risk of serious damage to property, or injury or death to a person.

"The consequences of that are certainly something we don't need in this community," he said.

Insp Guteridge said there had been a number of incidents involving pipe bombs "in recent years".

He said placing the easily made bombs could be seen as a prank by its makers, but said anyone involved in making them was also putting themselves at risk of serious injury.

EARLIER: Police are investigating the discovery of an explosive device in the Bundaberg suburb of Thabeban last night.

Around 5pm, police were called after an explosive device was located on the footpath outside a home on Goodwood Road.

An exclusion zone was put into place and the device was guarded by police until the attendance by specialist police around 1am.

EXPLOSIVE DEVICE: Police were alerted to the location of an explosive device found near Thabeban State School. Photo taken Wednesday, 14 January 2015. Photo: Max Fleet / NewsMail
EXPLOSIVE DEVICE: Police were alerted to the location of an explosive device found near Thabeban State School. Photo taken Wednesday, 14 January 2015. Photo: Max Fleet / NewsMail Max Fleet

Bundaberg Inspector Kev Guteridge said police were taking the matter seriously.

"I can safely say that the discovery of this explosive device is in no way linked to terrorism," he said.

"Despite this, it is obviously a very concerning incident and detectives are now working to determine how it came to be left on the footpath."

"At this stage, we are looking into the possibility that it may have been thrown from a vehicle. We are very fortunate that it didn't detonate and that nobody was hurt.

"We are urging anyone who may have information about this incident to contact Bundaberg police or Crimestoppers."

Inspector Guteridge said the device was around 20cm long and appeared to be made from PVC piping.

"If anyone sees an item that looks suspicious - please don't touch it. Leave it where it is and call police immediately."

Investigations are continuing.

A pipe bomb is an improvised explosive device and can be made from metal or PVC pipe.

Explosions from pipe bombs can be relatively large depending on how they are made and have been responsible for a multitude of deaths and injuries worldwide. 

"They can be fairly deadly," Bundaberg Police Sergeant Mike Brown said. 

No one was injured.

Earlier information suggested the bomb was found at the state school, however, the NewsMail can clarify the bomb was found on a footpath outside a home near the school - and was taken to the school to be detonated.

Topics:  bombs, bundaberg police, editors picks, thabeban state school




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