Bomb scare shuts down downtown Carbondale | AspenTimes.com
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Bomb scare shuts down downtown Carbondale

Gina GuarascioCarbondale correspondent

A suspicious pipe touched off a bomb scare that blocked off downtown Carbondale for several hours on Wednesday afternoon.No one was injured, but a host of downtown businesses closed for several hours before a bomb squad from Grand Junction detonated a cap on the device and declared the area safe. The bomb scare started when an employee of Qwest, which has a facility at Fourth and Main streets, called the Carbondale Police Department and reported finding a suspicious-looking pipe in the courtyard of the building about 2:30 p.m. Carbondale police and the Carbondale and Rural Fire Protection District took a look at the pipe and decided it was suspicious enough to call in the Grand Junction bomb squad.Authorities blocked off an area from Fourth Street to Weant Boulevard, and downtown buildings were evacuated until the bomb squad arrived about 6 p.m. “The police and fire department have taken a very cautious and conservative approach to this situation,” Fire Chief Ron Leach said in a news release. Leach said the pipe was about 16 inches long, 4 inches in diameter and had screw-on caps on both ends.He said no one received a threat, but the discovery of the unusual device caused alarm. All of the businesses in the downtown core evacuated. In the Dinkel Building alone, which covers an entire block of Main Street, 14 businesses and two residences were affected, according to building manager John Masters. “We had to leave the building immediately,” said Pauly Cranick, an employee at Java Joes. “I didn’t even have time to get a cup of coffee.” Wendy Anderson, owner of Novel Tea Bookstore, was out on the street corner with an employee and other gawkers wondering what was going on. “It was really nice of them to tell us what was going on two hours after we were evacuated,” she said.For anyone who was really put out, the Carbondale Middle School provided an emergency relocation center.


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