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Bomb squad removes old military sampling device from Chagrin River in Willoughby

Officials stressed there was 'no immediate threat to the community' at any time.

WILLOUGHBY, Ohio — Bomb Squad officials have removed an old military ordnance that was spotted in the Chagrin River Friday.

Authorities say some children located the object in Willoughby's Daniels Park along Johnnycake Ridge Road. One officer initially described it as "an old bomb" but stressed there was "no immediate threat to the community," and to everyone's relief, the dangerous looking discovery is actually quite harmless.

Willoughby cops shut down the park and blocked roads. Multiple other law enforcement agencies were seen investigating, including the Willoughby Fire Department, the Lake County Bomb Squad, and even members of the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton.

"There was no hazard whatsoever," Fire Chief Todd Ungar said after police cleared the scene. "[Investigators] went down and analyzed the object that was in the water [and] subsequently determined that it was actually a pre-World War II sampling device. It makes sense [because] we used to have a water treatment plant across the street, so it's very possible."

Ungar said inexplosive devices being found around town isn't foreign to them, though sometimes things in the area can get a little more dangerous: Last June, a boy in Willoughby Hills found an old artillery shell in the same river and carried it back to his house, only to discover later it was "still very much active."

3News reached out to Willoughby's Water Pollution Control Center to ask if this device could be tied to the old treatment plant, but we were unable to get an official comment due to staff being gone for the day. After a long day on edge, Ungar says it's a sigh of relief to know there's no threat, though he did want to clarify that if anyone should stumble across anything that seems suspicious, you should call police and not touch it.

"Glad that that’s all it was," he told reporters.

Daniels park will be open for full service Saturday.

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