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UNEXPLODED DEVICE DISCOVERED OFF CANE GARDEN POINT

UNEXPLODED DEVICE DISCOVERED OFF CANE GARDEN POINT

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The local Coast Guard has issued an advisory that persons operating in the waters off Cane Garden Point should maintain a distance of 500 yards from the area.

This precautionary measure is being taken following the discovery of “an unexploded device”, probably of World War II vintage, in the vicinity. The discovery was made by Kay Wilson, owner and operator of Indigo Dive Shop. {{more}}

Kay explained that she was doing a dive on Monday, January 16 with a group of German visitors in the area of Kingstown Harbour. As a collector of antique bottles, when she saw something sticking out from the sand, she immediately thought she had found a very large old bottle, as Kingstown Harbour is home to many such items, some dating back to the 17th century. “When I saw the bomb, I thought it was an old champagne bottle,” she exclaimed.

While dusting sand off the item in an attempt to excavate it, she realized it was not a bottle, but piece of ammunition.

Wilson said that she immediately knew what she had found. She explained that while growing up in the city of Bristol in the United Kingdom, every now and then, residents of that city would find similar pieces of ammunition since Bristol had expererienced heavy bombing during World War II.

She immediately contacted the Local Coast Guard who investigated and found the device in 14.5 meters of water. Commander Tyrone James told the Agency for Public Information that photographs were taken and sent to the Antigua- based United Kingdom advisory team who advised that the device still has the explosive attached.

In an interview with Searchlight, Wilson expressed shock at having found something like that in the waters around St. Vincent. However, according to Dr. Edgar Adams in his book “Linking the Golden Anchor with the Silver Chain,” Port Kingstown was no stranger to action during World War II. “As hostilities increased, ocean-going freighters returning from the West Indies to Europe were sometimes allowed to load their cargoes, leave port, only to be surprised by enemy submarine attacks inside territorial waters. Other cargo ships were attacked while still in port, and some others on the high seas.”

The Coast Guard is advising curious divers seeking to investigate the matter not to do so. The British High Commissioner and the US Embassy in Barbados have been contacted for assistance in dealing with the matter.

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