Kent – one of the most heavily UXO contaminated British counties
Kent was very heavily defended during WWII. This was mainly due to its location, just 20 miles from Nazi occupied France. Its coastline bristled with fortifications during the early 1940s and its garrison force numbered in the tens of thousands.
This never before seen coastal concentration of British military might inevitably resulted in lost or discarded ammunition. Consequently, incidents such as this British grenade find are relatively common.
In addition, the sea frequently deposits marine UXO (naval mines, naval shells, etc) on beaches all around the world, creating a unique mixed UXO hazard at such localities.
A Detailed UXO Risk Assessment would always be recommended by Brimstone prior to construction works in coastal locations. Especially Britain’s southern and eastern coastlines.
Should the public be concerned about such incidents?
Yes and no. Any item of UXO still containing explosives poses a hazard if mishandled. Even ammunition submerged under water for decades retains the potential to explode.
However, unexploded wartime relics require an impact to explode. The public are safe providing UXO is not tampered with prior to the arrival of bomb disposal personnel.