Senior Constable Tony Bordin ensures that Sandy Robertson and her dog Binda remain in the designated safety zone.
Senior Constable Tony Bordin ensures that Sandy Robertson and her dog Binda remain in the designated safety zone.

Bomb found on Byron beach

By DARREN COYNE

A BLOKE was giving the unexploded grenade a good kicking when Sandy Robertson first noticed it at the high tide mark on Kings Beach at Broken Head yesterday.

It was around 9am and Sandy was enjoying a stroll before taking up position for a leisurely morning by the ocean.

"After he finished kicking it around I went up and had a look and realised what it was, so I picked it up and put it in a safe spot," she said.

It wasn't until the afternoon that she collected the 23cm bomb and put it in her car for the 10-minute trip home along the bumpy Seven Mile Beach Road.

"I went really steady because I had visions of it blowing my back off. It was probably stupid, but I just didn't think it was right to leave it there," Sandy said.

Once home, Sandy put the bomb under a tree and rang the police.

Sandy's brother-in-law, an Army Reservist, identified it as a rocket-propelled grenade, 'the type they use for blowing up tanks'.

"The police came out straight away, isolated the bomb and immediately contacted the army bomb disposal squad," Sandy said.

"They told me it was highly volatile and that they were not leaving the property until the proper authorities arrived."

So with the American-made rocket-propelled grenade isolated, everyone settled down with a cold lemonade under a tree to wait for the army to arrive from Brisbane.

One of the police officers decided, however, to take a quick photograph ? the only problem was, the device was gone!

Apparently, attracted by the sea smell, Sandy's dog Binda had decided it was just the thing to have a good chew on.

After an initial panic, the bomb was finally located again about 10 metres away ? a blissful Binda happily gnawing on its barnacle-covered casing. Luckily, both Binda and the bomb failed to blow up.

In fact, it wasn't until a member of the army bomb squad finally arrived at 6pm last night that the 1940s bomb was found to be inactive from its time in the ocean.

The expert warned, however, that such a device should not be handled under any circumstance as it was impossible to tell whether they were still dangerous.



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