Not so long ago, historical rules gave Alberta farmers and ranchers easy access to dynamite and detonators. Because of these rules, there is a large, but unquantified, amount of degraded dynamite in our province today. Every year, many Albertans report finding dynamite or detonators stored, or in some cases forgotten, on their properties. The Alberta RCMP Explosives Disposal Unit urges citizens who find such items on their property to be cautious and immediately report it to their local detachment.
Within the last year, police recovered 115 detonators and have dealt with 10 files involving detonators and dynamite. In addition, the Explosives Disposal Unit recovered a total of four hand grenades within one week in Devon, Red Deer and Didsbury.
"It is so important for people to understand how dangerous these materials can be no matter how much time has passed since they were stored, says Cpl. Paul Zanon. "Two weeks ago, we recovered two hand grenades in Devon with the assistance of the Canadian Armed Forces and one of them was still active despite being encased in concrete some 60 years ago. We can't stress it enough. If you find such materials on your property, do not touch or move them. Immediately report it to police."
The RCMP is well equipped to dispose of degraded dynamite and all other types of explosives, and will do so at no cost. When advising police, individuals should not move or touch the explosive device. If possible, take photos and send to police along with the age of the device, its location and the amount present.