Canyon County

Construction workers discover live explosives underneath Treasure Valley bridge

Divers find unexploded military ordnance beneath this Idaho bridge

Contractors found two unexploded military ordnance beneath Idaho Highway 45 bridge over Snake River, according to an Idaho Transportation Department news release. The objects have been safely removed and disposed of.
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Contractors found two unexploded military ordnance beneath Idaho Highway 45 bridge over Snake River, according to an Idaho Transportation Department news release. The objects have been safely removed and disposed of.

Idaho construction contractors ran into something scary on Halloween as they conducted maintenance repairs on the Idaho 45 bridge over the Snake River: two unexploded military ordnances.

According to an Idaho Transportation Department press release, divers working on the bridge repairs dove into the river to inspect the base of a bridge pier on Oct. 31. While underwater, they discovered the first ordnance. The contractor contacted the Canyon County Sheriff’s Office, and a bomb squad arrived from Nampa Police Department to remove the device.

In a phone interview Tuesday, Mountain Home Air Force Base officials said the devices were pre-1970s artillery rounds that did not originate from the base.

“The Mountain Home Air Force Base received the device and safely detonated it off-site,” ITD said in the release.

The next day, the second ordnance was found nearby. Both devices were about 20 feet underwater. The construction crews again halted work and contacted the Air Force base’s explosive ordnance device unit. The EOD unit determined the device wasn’t an immediate risk to boaters or bridge travelers, so removal was delayed a week until Nov. 9.

A Navy dive team removed the second device and swept the area for any additional ordnances, ITD said. The bridge was closed during that time. No other devices were found in the immediate area, but ITD said it will continue to sweep around the site before maintenance continues.

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