October 13, 2018 4:08 pm

‘Bomb-making components’ in Nanaimo tent city were commercial fireworks: RCMP

A member of the RCMP Explosives Disposal Unit arrives at a Nanaimo tent city on Friday night.

Allen Felker

The Nanaimo RCMP say the suspected bomb-making components that turned up in Nanaimo’s controversial tent city were actually commercial fireworks.

Const. Gary O’Brien said a camp resident found the materials in a plastic bag and tried to dispose of them in a sharps disposal box near the camp’s fence.

READ MORE: Nanaimo tent city evacuated after possible bomb-making components found

“Our [Explosives Disposal Unit (EDU)] members actually said if they had been lit, that in itself would have been an IED with the needles and the hard plastic and whatnot,” O’Brien said.

About 30 people were evacuated from the camp, and a portion of Front Street was closed off Friday night while the RCMP called in the EDU from the Lower Mainland.

A member of the EDU transports what was later discovered to be commercial fireworks away from the tent city.

Allen Felker

The crew arrived around 10:30 p.m. and was able to safely dispose of the materials.

O’Brien said it’s unclear how someone was able to get their hands on commercial-grade fireworks but that it will form a part of the investigation.

The incident was over by about midnight, O’Brien said.

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