Coast Guard Seeks Info in Bomb Hoax

ATLANTIC BEACH, N.C. – The Coast Guard is looking for any information in a hoax bomb-threat to the Surf City, N.C., swing bridge, which prompted a massive response from federal, state and local officials Thursday.

Coast Guard Station Wrighstville Beach received a call Thursday morning from the Surf City Swing Bridge tender who overheard a transmission on VHF Channel 13 which stated, “Just blow the bridge up.”

Coast Guard Station Wrighstville Beach immediately contacted the Sector North Carolina Command Center in Fort Macon, N.C., which set the response into motion. Small boats from Station Wrightsville Beach and Station Emerald Isle were dispatched to the scene and established a temporary safety zone shutting down traffic on the Intracoastal Waterway for nearly three hours.

Local law enforcement immediately responded closing the road and establishing an incident command post. A Department of Defense explosives team was called to the scene and swept the bridge and a nearby tug and barge for explosives or anything suspicious.

The search yielded no results and the call was presumed a hoax. The Coast Guard is actively pursuing the source of the call. Much like the numerous hoax distress calls the Coast Guard receives each week the call received on Thursday was illegal and the response cost taxpayers thousands of dollars.

Anyone who has information regarding the source of the call is urged to contact Coast Guard Sector North Carolina Command Center at (252) 247-4570.

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