Explosives found in California cave

From Wikinews, the free news source you can write!
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Crystal Cave, which is in Sequoia National Park, was evacuated after park employees found a substance that was believed to be explosive material left behind after construction work inside the cave conducted during the 1930s, as the material used was cloth, and not plastic.

Crystal Cave
Image: Victor Gane.

The discovery was made while workers were performing restoration work at the cave. They found what appeared to be remnants of live explosives. The person serving as the chief regional blaster for the park was then contacted.

The National Park service said that the explosives may be nitroglycerin. They also said that because of its instability, detonation may be required for removal. "In preparation for that possibility, park staff will install temporary blasting mats and blankets to protect cave formations and features. The area remains closed," said the NPS. Authorities are concerned that the other end of the blasting cap could be attached to a stick of live dynamite.

The cave remains closed at this time but staff aim to reopen on May 21, in time for Memorial Day.