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Friday 29 August 2014

Bomb squad blows up explosive chemicals discovered in girls’ secondary school lab

Conor Feehan

Published 04/10/2013 | 06:46

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Bomb Disposal team at Santa Sabina Girls secondary school in Sutton, Dublin. A dangerous chemical was removed from one of the science labs and a controlled explosion was performed on the beach opposite the school. Photo: Padraig O'Reilly

THIS is the moment the army bomb squad blew up a container filled with explosive chemicals that was found at a girls’ school.

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The experts carried out the controlled |explosion on a beach near Santa Sabina secondary school in Sutton.

Teachers called the bomb squad after |discovering dinitro-phenyl-hydrazine during an audit of their laboratory. The chemical |is safe when wet, but highly explosive if dry.

Soldiers isolated the chemical, which is better known as Brady’s reagent, and dealt with it after classes finished.

A defence forces spokesman told the |Herald: “The substance can become unstable as it decomposes and dries out, and then becomes sensitive to shock such as being dropped or banged.

“We handle about two of these a month. The usual procedure is to wait until the school is empty and take the chemical compound to an open green area, where a hole is dug.

“It is then placed inside with an explosive charge and the hole is covered with |sandbags before the charge is detonated.

“In this case, the tide was out and it was |convenient to take the chemical there to |dispose of it.”

The scene was declared safe a short time later and the squad returned to their base.

hnews@herald.ie

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