Man digs up stash of wartime grenades as he renovates home in eastern China

Police uncover badly eroded grenades and mortar bombs identified as the type used by Japan during the Sino-Japanese war

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 04 March, 2018, 4:49pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 04 March, 2018, 5:14pm

A man has unearthed a stash of grenades and ammunition, believed to date back to the Japanese invasion over 70 years ago, as he was renovating his home in eastern China.

He called police after finding several cartridges while he was working on a new bathroom at the house in an old part of Zhenjiang, Jiangsu province, Yangtse Evening Post reported on Saturday.

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A police officer said when he arrived with colleagues the man was using an electric drill to probe for more.

“I was very nervous when I saw the drill,” the officer, who was not identified, told the newspaper.

“He’s not a professional and there could have been devastating consequences if that drill had set off an explosion.”

More officers were called in with scanners and after five hours of digging they had removed 100 grenades, three grenade warheads and three mortar bombs which they identified as the type used by Japan during the Sino-Japanese war between 1937 and 1945.

They were badly eroded, some with their fuses fully exposed.

“One explosion could have set off all of those grenades – and it would have been a powerful blast because there were so many of them,” the officer was quoted as saying.

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He said the site could have been a stronghold for the Japanese army.

The grenades and ammunition were sent to a warehouse to be destroyed.