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Troopers Investigate Explosives Theft near Klawock

By Chris Klint, Senior Digital Producer, cklint@ktuu.com
Published On: Nov 27 2013 01:05:38 PM AKST
ANCHORAGE, Alaska -

State troopers and federal investigators are trying to recover a quantity of explosive material, taken along with some power tools from a storage area near the Southeast Alaska community of Klawock earlier this week.

According to a Wednesday AST dispatch, the Austin Powder Company’s Ketchikan office called troopers Tuesday to report the theft, which occurred at a facility on Prince of Wales Island.

AST spokesperson Megan Peters says the storage area, about 10 miles outside of Klawock, was broken into within the last three days. While two electric drills and a DeWalt reciprocating saw were also taken, troopers are focused on locating the stolen explosives.

“As much low explosive blasting agent was taken as one person could carry,” Peters wrote in an email to Channel 2. “The amount of explosive stolen could be potentially very dangerous.”

Low explosives, such as a blend of ammonium nitrate and fuel oil, are relatively inert and usually require a separate explosive charge to detonate. Their stability and wide availability makes them popular for mining and demolition tasks.

Peters says troopers don’t currently have suspects in the case, but state and wildlife troopers in Klawock are processing evidence found at the scene. The U.S. Justice Department’s Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has been informed of the theft.

“Austin Powder Company has also notified ATF and troopers will work with that federal agency as necessary,” Peters wrote.

Anyone with information on the case should contact Klawock troopers at 907-755-2291.