The United States Navy has revealed that the quarry that was found floating on the surface of Washington's Puget Sound was a remnant of a training exercise that took place 13 years ago.
The Navy said the mine was a training object created and used during a Naval Undersea Warfare Center-Keyport exercise in 2005, Kitsap Sun reported.
The rusty device, which looked like a naval contact mine, typically placed underwater and used to damage ships and submarines in times of war, was first seen floating on the surface of Puget Sound, between Brownsville Marina and Bainbridge Island, Washington , on Tuesday at about 2pm.
The US Navy UU He said the underwater device similar to a mine that was seen floating in the Puget Sound in Washington on Tuesday was an inert training device created and used in 2005.
When it was first detected, the corrosion of the device caused some concern that the training mine could have been a real military explosive device.
After the water surrounding the device was cordoned off by the US Coast Guard. The US Navy sent an explosive ordnance disposal team, which towed the mine back to nearby Port Orchard Bay.
The initial investigation of the device revealed that it had "decades of marine growth" & # 39; on it, according to a press release from the Navy.
The Navy detonated the mine at 8.15 p.m. and KIRO-TV captured dramatic images. The news station reported at the time that the Navy said that the lack of a second explosion after the detonation indicated that the mine was not active.
The device was finally detonated & # 39; by a lot of caution & # 39; said the Navy.
A spokesman for the Naval War Center Underwater-Keyport confirmed on Thursday that the device under training did not contain explosive materials and that it had been safe for public detonation.
The Navy investigated the device and determined that it was inert, but detonated it anyway
The mine-like device was placed underwater during the 6th annual Submarine Autonomous Vehicle Festival 2005. This map shows the various "minefields". Exercise training
& # 39; Training objects, are made to resemble a foreign mine. They themselves are not mines, "the spokesman told Kitsap Sun." They are all inert, they do not have any artillery on them. "
It was said that the recent surface mine was one of the four inert, mine-like artifacts anchored two meters above the seabed and used during the sixth Autonomous Underwater Vehicle Festival in 2005.
Several Navy commands, industry partners and academics participated in the festival, which aimed to test how capable the more than 40 underwater vehicles were and their technology to detect underwater objects.
The other three mining training devices had been recovered, said the spokesman for the Naval War Center Underwater-Keyport.
It has been speculated that the steel cable and shackles that had been used to keep the device in place had corroded and broken after being underwater for the past 13 years, which allowed the fourth mine to open the surface.
It is said that there are many "negatively floating" objects that were placed on the seabed that were used in the simulated festival minefield of the festival, neither of which is said to be a danger.
Those objects, along with the mine that emerged and exploded, were left in place to be used in routine training exercises over the years.
However, the Navy has said it plans to survey the training mine field areas to locate and recover any object that looks like it could be disarmed and resurface.