Staff evacuated after suspicious device found at Woolies garage store

19 July 2018 - 10:27 By Yasantha Naidoo
In the past two weeks several incendiary devices were planted at Woolworths stores.
In the past two weeks several incendiary devices were planted at Woolworths stores.
Image: Bruce Gorton

Staff and customers were evacuated from a garage and Woolworths convenience store in Ilala Ridge‚ Umhlanga‚ on Thursday morning following the discovery of a suspicious device.

A staff member is said to have discovered the device and sounded the alarm and police were called.

A tenant at a building next to the garage said staff and customers were evacuated as members of the Explosives Unit were called to investigate.

SAPS spokesman Vish Naidoo confirmed that police had attended to a suspicious-looking parcel at the service station on Thursday morning. He said a parcel was searched and it was found to contain old fireworks. No case was opened.

Naidoo said police resources were being "exhausted" on hoax calls relating to suspicious parcels.

"These hoax calls are draining police resources. We have to respond to every call and we have found that 60 to 65% of these are hoax calls‚ particularly during school holidays."

He said police had also received a hoax call from an unidentified caller of a suspicious parcel found opposite Woolworths in Pine Street‚ Durban‚ on Thursday morning.

In the past two weeks several incendiary devices were planted at other Woolworths stores in the city as well as at the Vodacom Durban July. These devices‚ rudimentary in nature‚ have been triggered and caused minor fires.

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